Telesat, a leading global satellite operator, has procured two prototype Ka-band satellites for operation in low earth orbit (LEO) that Telesat anticipates launching mid-to-late 2017 as part of a test and validation phase for an advanced, global LEO satellite constellation that Telesat is developing. Through an authorization issued by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), Telesat has secured priority rights to certain Ka-band spectrum in non-geostationary orbits (NGSO) at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) to operate such a constellation.
Telesat has contracted with Space Systems Loral (SSL) of Palo Alto, California, and Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL), an independent British company within the Airbus Defence & Space group, for the procurement of the prototypes. By drawing on the advanced technologies and expertise of these leading manufacturers, Telesat will test and demonstrate two distinct spacecraft in LEO, a key step in optimizing the design and performance of Telesat’s contemplated LEO constellation.
“Telesat is proud of our long and distinguished record of satellite innovation, including technical breakthroughs that have enabled our customers to realize significant gains in broadband performance,” said Dave Wendling, Telesat’s Chief Technical Officer. “Our Anik F2 satellite was the first to provide Ka-band high throughput satellite capacity. We are now developing a global constellation of advanced, high throughput LEO satellites operating in Ka-band, which we believe will offer a number of important advantages for the global delivery of high capacity broadband services. The Telesat team looks forward to working with SSL and SSTL to validate and demonstrate key parameters of our contemplated next generation satellite network as well as with other technology partners as we move forward with our plans.”