Posted on: 18 August 2015 by Mark Howells
The launch of Inmarsat’s third Global Xpress (GX) satellite, Inmarsat-5 F3 (I-5 F3), has been scheduled for Friday 28 August at 12:44pm (BST) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
The launch of Inmarsat’s third 5th generation satellite, built in California by Boeing Satellite Systems International Inc. like Inmarsat-5 F1 and Inmarsat-5 F2, is being undertaken for Inmarsat by International Launch Services (ILS) using a Proton launch vehicle.
I-5 F3 will cover the Pacific Ocean Region and will, together with Inmarsat’s other two GX satellites, create the world’s first globally available, high-speed mobile broadband service delivered through a single provider. It’s estimated the satellites will deliver broadband speeds around 100 times faster than the company’s fourth generation (I-4) constellation, even in the remotest and most inaccessible regions of the world.
Rupert Pearce, CEO of Inmarsat, explained, “The completion of the Global Xpress constellation will be a significant milestone for our organisation and is fundamental to the delivery of a new era in mobile satellite communications which will change the future for us all. We believe that our GX technology will drive innovation and support value-added services and solutions for our government and enterprise customers on land, at sea and in the air; in opportunities as diverse as the merchant maritime, business and commercial aviation, government, energy & resources and enterprise VSAT segments. We are particularly pleased that GX will support vital programmes enabling governments to meet the rapidly changing requirements of our world, including the transformation of remote societies that are currently inadequately served by terrestrial networks.”
The first Global Xpress satellite – Inmarsat-5 F1 – was launched in December 2013 and entered commercial service in July 2014, covering Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. This was followed by the launch of Inmarsat-5 F2 on 1 February, 2015, which covers the Americas and the Atlantic Ocean and which will enter commercial service later this month.
Following the successful launch of I-5 F3, Inmarsat expects to commence global commercial GX services by the end of the year.