In April 2015, Thales Alenia Space signed a contract with the Korean satellite service operator KTSAT to design and build two telecommunications satellites, the Koreasat-7 and Koreasat-5A. As the program’s prime contractor, Thales Alenia Space is in charge of the design, production, testing and On Ground Delivery (OGD) of the satellites. It will also take charge of the launch campaigns, the launch and early operations phase (LEOP) and in-orbit tests (IOT).
Recently, Thales Alenia Space completed the preliminary design review (PDR) of the Koreasat-7 and Koreasat-5A satellites. These two satellites are set to be operated by KTSAT, a subsidiary of KT, and will serve South Korea, the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Japan, Indochina and the Middle East regions with internet access, multimedia, broadcasting and fixed communications services.
Built on the upgraded Spacebus 4000B2 platform from Thales Alenia Space, the Koreasat-7 satellite whose coverage zone encompasses Korea, the Philippines, Indonesia and India, will be positioned at 116° East and fitted with Ku-band transponders and Ka-band transponders. Koreasat-5A will be positioned at 113° East, carry Ku-band transponders and will cover Korea, Japan, Indochina and the Middle East. Each satellite will weigh about 3,500 kg at launch and will offer payload power of about 7 kW.
Jean-Loic Galle, President and CEO of Thales Alenia Space, is confident in his company’s ability to deliver. He said in a statement: "KTSAT is a long-standing customer, for whom we already built the Koreasat-5 and Koreasat-6 satellites. Through this new contract, we support the development of large-scale space programs in South Korea and in Asia." The contract also calls for Thales Alenia Space to be in charge of the launch services which are expected to occur in 2017.
Headquartered in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France, the Thales Group is a multinational company with footholds in multiple platforms including aerospace, space and defense, security, and transportation. Along with Finmeccanica, they are the parent company of Thales Alenia Space which was established on April 5, 2006.
Today, the Thales Group has operations in more than 50 countries with over 68,000 employees-7,500 of which are employed by the Alenia Space segment. As of 2013, the company operates in 14 industrial sites located in six countries: France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, England and USA. As a whole, Thales Group reported a revenue of USD$15 billion in 2011, 60% of which came from military sales. Fortune 500 Global ranks the group as the 475th-largest company and the 11th-largest defense contractor in the world.
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