Boeing’s revolutionary new satellite
Once upon a time Boeing, and its Hughes predecessor, held many of the aces in terms of satellite design. The Hughes HS376 so-called ‘spinner’ craft (Astra 3A, now at 23.5 deg East, is a ‘spinner’) and HS 601/701 and 702 ‘birds’ were the workhorses of the world’s satellite industry. Now a new generation of satellites from Boeing Space has been designed.
Intelsat is ordering 4 of Boeing’s impressive 702B series craft. Intelsat previously said the first 702B will be designated Intelsat 22. A year ago when the idea was first talked about neither Intelsat nor Boeing would reveal features of the new spacecraft's design. Intelsat 22 is to carry a UHF payload for the Australian Defense Forces, along with 48 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders for Intelsat's own use. In other words this is potentially a giant craft. We also know that Intelsat 21 will also be within this fresh order book.
Besides drawing on the original 701 and then 702 series advances, the satellite is said to offer clients some significant variations and flexibility of operation. One benefit is that its high power output but smaller overall design (than the 701) means it can be carried aloft on Proton and Ariane launchers.
"We've been developing this variant of our Boeing 702 satellite for more than four years, incorporating low-risk, proven technologies that differentiate the Boeing 702B from our competitors' spacecraft, while providing the flexibility needed to accommodate a large variety of commercial and government satellite requirements," said Craig Cooning, VP/GM of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. "We're extremely proud of the increased value this design can offer our customers. Using our Lean manufacturing processes, this new addition to the Boeing 702 family is also easier to manufacture and assemble, resulting in a high-quality, affordable product."