Inmarsat's sixth-generation (I-6) fleet and first to feature dual-payload satellites will be launched by both Inmarsat and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) later this year on December 21st.
The I-6s will support L-band (ELERA) and Ka-band (Global Xpress) services as part of the company’s ORCHESTRA mesh network. To date, MHI has undertaken 47 successful consecutive launches, The December announcement will see and a dedicated launch service for the I-6 F1 launch with the H-IIA Launch Vehicle, configured as H2A204/4S, with 4 Solid Rocket boosters (SRB-As).
The core stages of the H2A launch vehicle are undergoing final checks at MHI’s factory in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, ahead of their shipment to the launch site on Tanegashima island, Kagoshima Prefecture, located in the southwest of Japan.
“Our first Inmarsat 6 satellite, I-6F1, is the largest and most advanced commercial communications satellite ever launched,” said Rajeev Suri, Inmarsat CEO.
“The I-6s are Inmarsat’s first ever hybrid L- and Ka-band satellites, incorporating increased capacity and new technological advances for ELERA’s transformational L-band services alongside additional Global Xpress high-speed broadband capacity.
“They demonstrate Inmarsat’s ongoing investment for the benefit of mobility customers worldwide, delivering a platform for technologies that ELERA enables, including the Industrial IOT, by providing increased network capacity and resilience,” Suri said.