Thursday , March 30 2023

SpaceX delivers the last 10 Iridium NEXT satellites in low ground orbit


MCLEAN, Va., – Iridium Communications Inc. announced that 07:31 PST (15:31 UTC) On Friday, January 11, SpaceX Falcon 9 launches from Vandenberg Air Force launches and delivered the last 10 Iridium NEXT satellites in a low-ground orbit (LEO).

All 10 satellites have successfully contacted the Iridium Satellite Network Operations Center and are about to perform the initial orbit testing. It was the eighth and last start for the historical launch of Iridium with SpaceX, with a total of 75 new satellites being deployed in less than two years.

Iridium has invested about $ 3 billion to replace its original satellite system with a new, modern network that is beginning to undergo financial and technological change in the company. These include the Iridium CertusSM, which will provide a global special L-band broadband connection, allowing very mobile Internet access through smaller and more cost-effective terminals, and AireonSM aircraft surveillance system, increasing the visibility of air traffic controllers and airlines in real time for the first time on the planet for the first time.

"It has been an honor to deliver 75 new Iridium NEXT satellites to orbit. Matt and the entire Iridium NEXT team have been incredible to work," said Gwynne Shotwell, SpaceX President and Chief Operating Officer. "On behalf of all our employees, we congratulate Iridium on achieving this incredible turn."

The constellation of Iridian satellites consists of six polar orbital planes, each of which contains 11 interconnected satellites, totaling 66 operative constellations, creating a coverage network around the world. The 10 Iridium NEXT satellites launched within this final mission were deployed on three orbital planes. Since its inception, the constellation has changed to one, one new, old satellite, achieved by a very choreographic space maneuver called "slot change".

"There are a few words that describe what is considered necessary to complete a vision that began many years ago when I joined the company, and what that means for Iridium and our future," said Iridium CEO Matt Desch. "Thanks to SpaceX for helping to create this new generation of satellites in orbit, so every time you are out of words. However, for Iridium we are not yet completely over the finish line because there is still much to be done. , and I'm just incredibly proud of our team. "

Related: SpaceX Launches Spaceflight SSO-A: SmallSat Express Carrying 64 Loads of Low Earth Orbitytyxrtfq

So far, the new satellites are made up of 60 of the 66 active satellites, and the last six are designed to be activated in the coming weeks from today 's launch. Iridium NEXT satellites were developed by Thales Alenia Space, acting as the system's main contractor and integrated by Thales's subcontractor Northrop Grumman. In the production process, a modern line of 18 stations is available for all 81 Iridium NEXT satellites.

In total, 81 satellites are being created with 75 successful launches. Nine of the launched satellites will operate as orbit reserves, and the remaining six will be ground spare parts.

Are you ready to make a purchase? Search for a smart travel guide for businesses, new products, press releases and videos

Source link