Lockheed Martin has been awarded a contract by Arabsat and King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology to produce two A2100-based communications satellites. Valued at $650 million, the contract stands as Lockheed Martin’s first new commercial satellite contract since 2011 when it completed a deal with the Australian satellite company NewSat.
The two spacecraft that will be constructed will be named HellasSat4/SaudiGeoSat 1 and Arabsat 6A, both of which are planned to be launched in 2018. The HellasSat4/SaudiGeoSat 1 has a launch mass of approximately 6,000 kilograms (13,227 pounds) and will be launched from a French Guiana Ariane 5 rocket on the upper berth of the dual payload adaptor structure. SpaceX will be assisting in the launch of the Arabsat 6A on their Falcon Heavy rocket. New launch pads will be prepared by SpaceX at Kennedy Space Center in Florida as well as Brownsville, Texas to support Falcon Heavy launches.
Both of the satellites are based on Lockheed Martin’s A2100 communications satellite spacecraft model. First launched in 1996, the A2100 geosynchronous spacecraft series is specifically designed for telecommunication needs, supporting platforms such as Ka-band broadband and broadcast services, fixed satellite services in C-band and Ku-band payload configurations, high-power direct broadcast services using the Ku-band frequency spectrum, and mobile satellite services using UHF, L-band and S-band payloads. Lockheed Martin provides A2100 to communications companies worldwide including Astra, Telesat, and JSAT Corporation.
Lockheed Martin is a leading American global aerospace, defense, security, and advanced technology company. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin employs over 100,000 people and has over 12 different subsidiaries. Being one of the world’s largest defense contractors, a majority of their revenue comes from military sales. The company’s five business segments are Aeronautics, Information Systems & Global Solutions, Missile and Fire Control, Mission Systems and Training, and Space Systems.
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