Posted on: 22 January 2015 by Mark Howells
Inmarsat has announced plans to launch the second of three Global Xpress (GX) satellites, Inmarsat-5 F2 (I-5 F2), from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 12.31pm (GMT) on Sunday 1 February.
I-5 F2 will provide GX broadband services covering the Americas and the Atlantic Ocean, complementing the first GX satellite – Inmarsat-5 F1 – which already covers Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Inmarsat-5 F1 was launched in December 2013 and entered regional commercial service in July 2014.
The third and final GX satellite, Inmarsat-5 F3, is scheduled to launch during the second quarter of 2015, with Inmarsat planning to implement global commercial GX services in the latter half of this year.
“Through Global Xpress, the world can move forward from the ‘Internet of Everything’ to the ‘Internet of Everywhere’, in which high-speed, reliable and secure connectivity is available anywhere and at any time – even in the most inaccessible regions – for customers on the move or to fixed locations,” commented CEO of Inmarsat Rupert Pearce.
The new GX network also complements Inmarsat’s existing fleet of L-band communication satellites. Each one has been built by Boeing Satellite Systems in California and, weighing 6100kg at launch, has a wing-span wider than a Boeing 737.
The I-5 F2 will be launched by International Launch Services on-board a Proton Breeze M rocket on behalf of Inmarsat.
Rupert Pearce, CEO of Inmarsat, concluded: “Global Xpress is a truly transformational technology and, as we complete its global roll-out, 2015 promises to be one of the most significant chapters in our company’s history.”