Airbus Defence and Space

Telecommunications Press releases

Airbus Defence and Space-built ASTRA 5B satellite shipped to launch site

• ASTRA 5B is the eighth Eurostar satellite designed and manufactured by Airbus Defence and Space for SES

• The latest in a line of state-of-the-art broadcast satellites, ASTRA 5B will also carry a hosted EGNOS payload operating in L-band

6 November 2013 – The ASTRA 5B satellite, designed and manufactured by Airbus Defence and Space, the world’s second-ranking space company, for satellite operator SES, has left Toulouse, France, after completion of its final integration and test campaign. The telecommunications satellite is now en route to Kourou, French Guiana, in preparation for its launch by an Ariane 5 vehicle in December 2013.

Based on Airbus Defence and Space’s highly reliable Eurostar E3000 platform, Astra 5B will be deployed at the orbital location of 31.5° East. It will provide extended transponder capacity in Ku and Ka bands with geographical reach over Eastern European and neighbouring markets for DTH, direct-to-cable and feeding to digital terrestrial television networks. It will also carry a hosted L-band payload for the European Commission’s European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS).

ASTRA 5B will have a launch mass of 6 tonnes, a wingspan of 40m once its solar arrays are deployed in orbit, and a spacecraft power of 13kW until the end of its 15-year design lifetime. Launch and Early Orbit Phase (LEOP) operations will be conducted from the Airbus Defence and Space spacecraft control centre in Toulouse.

ASTRA 5B will be the eighth Eurostar satellite in the SES fleet, following the recent successful launches of ASTRA 2F in September 2012, SES-6 in June 2013, and ASTRA 2E in September 2013. One more Eurostar E3000 for SES (ASTRA 2G) is currently in final integration and tests in Airbus Defence and Space facilities.


About Airbus Defence and Space

Together, pioneering excellence

Airbus Defence and Space is the number one company in Europe for space technologies and the second in the world. It is the only global company that covers the full range of civil and defence space systems, equipment and services.

In 2012, Airbus Defence and Space had a turnover over €5.8 billion and 18,000 employees worldwide.

Its three business units are: Airbus Defence and Space, the European prime contractor for launchers, orbital systems and space exploration; Airbus Defence and Space, a leading provider of satellite system solutions, including spacecraft, ground segments, payloads and equipments; Airbus Defence and Space, the Space services partner for critical missions, providing comprehensive fixed and mobile solutions covering secure and commercial satcoms and networks, and bespoke geo-information services, worldwide.

Airbus Defence and Space is a wholly owned subsidiary of AIRBUS Group, a global leader in aerospace, defence and related services. In 2012, the Group – comprising Airbus, Airbus Defence and Space, Cassidian and Eurocopter – generated revenues of €56.5 billion and employed a workforce of over 140,000.


Press contacts

Jeremy Close                                       Tel.: +44 (0)1 438 77 3872

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