SpaceX Rockets U.S. Launches to New Heights in 2022

Falcon 9 launches 53 Starlink satellites on June 17, 2022. (Credit: SpaceX)

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

Powered by 33 flights of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 booster, the United States leads all nations with 48 launch attempts through the first seven months of the year. The total is three short of the number of U.S. launches attempted last year, and far ahead of the 27 launches conducted by second place China through the end of July. The U.S. has conducted more launches than the 43 flights conducted by the rest of the world combined.

A number of notable flights were conducted. SpaceX launched two Crew Dragons to the International Space Station (ISS), including the first fully privately funded mission to the orbiting laboratory. United Launch Alliance (ULA) launched Boeing’s CST-100 Starship crew vehicle on an automated flight test to ISS, a crucial step before astronauts to fly on the spacecraft. Small satellite launch provider Rocket Lab conducted its first deep-space mission by sending a spacecraft the size of a microwave to the moon.

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SES to Power Innovative, Immersive Experiences Onboard Leading Family Cruise Lines Fleet with O3b mPOWER

Cruise line’s newbuild programme and current fleet will leverage SES’s O3b mPOWER connectivity service to make seamless family luxury a reality

LUXEMBOURG (SES PR) — SES, the world’s leading content connectivity satellite service provider, will be providing ground-breaking high-speed satellite-based connectivity services to the newest landmark ship of a leading family cruise line, the company announced today. The cruise line existing fleet will also transition its connectivity to SES’s second-generation medium earth orbit (MEO) system O3b mPOWER, alongside installing the service onto its newbuild programme.

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Innovative Data Satellite Enters Commercial Service

On 23 October 2021, Ariane 5 flight VA255 lifted off from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana to deliver two telecom satellites, SES-17 and Syracuse-4A to their planned orbits. (Credit: ESA/CNES/Arianespace)

PARIS (ESA PR) — A large data-driven telecommunications satellite that uses innovative technology to keep cool as well as other innovations – developed under an ESA Partnership Project – has started its commercial service.

The satellite will provide broadband connectivity for commercial shipping, aviation, governments and enterprises through its operator, SES, as well connecting underserved areas and accelerating digital inclusion.

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ARSAT Will Use SES-17 to Expand Satellite Broadband Connectivity in Argentina

SES will support ARSAT’s mission to accelerate digital inclusion, close the digital gap and provide broadband services all over the country

LUXEMBOURG (ARSAT PR) — ARSAT, Argentina’s leading telecommunications company, will take advantage of SES’s recently launched high performance geostationary (GEO) satellite, SES-17, to deliver high-quality connectivity services. “We want to reach all areas of the country,” SES and ARSAT announced today. The multi-year agreement will allow ARSAT to provide reliable broadband satellite services starting in mid-2022.

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SES’s O3b mPOWER Satellites to Provide Global High-Speed Connectivity to Explora Journeys

EXPLORA I, Explora Journeys’ first ship, will benefit from SES’s world-leading connectivity service that aligns with Explora Journeys’ long-held ambition to redefine luxury ocean travel

LUXEMBOURG (SES PR) — SES, the world’s leading content connectivity satellite service provider, today announced that it will be providing global connectivity services to Explora Journeys, debuting on EXPLORA IGuests and crew will benefit from SES’s best-in-class low latency, highest available throughput and global Cruise mPOWERED connectivity service.

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SES’s C-band Satellite Successfully Launched Onboard SpaceX Rocket

Falcon 9 lifts off with SES-22 communications satellite on June 29, 2022. (Credit: SpaceX webcast)

First SES C-band satellite dedicated to freeing up lower 300 MHz of C-band spectrum will ensure SES can continue providing video and data services to its customers while enabling wireless operators to quickly deploy 5G services across the US

Cape Canaveral (SES PR) – SES announced today that the SES-22 satellite was successfully launched into space onboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from SpaceX’s Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, United States, at 5:04 pm local time.

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SES Successfully Prices EUR 750 Million Eurobond

LUXEMBOURG, 7 June 2022 (SES PR) – SES S.A. today announced the successful launch and pricing of a bond offering in which the company has agreed to sell senior unsecured fixed rate notes due in 2029 for a total amount of EUR 750 million [US $789 million]. The new notes will bear a coupon of 3.50% and were priced at 99.725% of their nominal value, representing a credit spread of 175bps and a yield-to-maturity of 3.55%.

SES is rated Baa2, negative outlook by Moody’s and BBB, stable outlook by Fitch. Proceeds of the issuance will be used for general corporate purposes, which include the refinancing of existing debt.

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NASA, Industry to Collaborate on Space Communications by 2025

An artist rendering of a NASA Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS) in orbit. TDRS provides a vital communications link between ground facilities and the International Space Station, the Hubble Space Telescope and a host of Earth science satellites. The agency would decommission TDRS to enable commercial providers to support future near-Earth communication mission requirements. (Credits: NASA)

CLEVELAND (NASA PR) — NASA selected six American satellite communications (SATCOM) providers on April 20 to begin developing and demonstrating near-Earth space communication services that may support future agency missions.

For more than a year, the agency has been evaluating the feasibility of employing commercial SATCOM networks for near-Earth operations as it works to decommission its near-Earth satellite fleet. This approach would allow NASA to focus more time and resources on its deep space exploration and science missions.

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SES Partners with NorthStar Earth & Space to Tackle Space Sustainability Challenges

Collaboration will improve Space Situational Awareness and promote best practices in all near-Earth orbits for SES and its partners

Luxembourg, 31 March 2022 (SES PR) – A partnership to enhance Space Situational Awareness (SSA) and ensure a sustainable use of space has been formed between SES, the world’s leading satellite-based content connectivity solutions provider, and NorthStar Earth and Space (NorthStar), the first commercial service to monitor space from space, both companies announced today.  

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Satellites Around the Moon Come Another Step Closer

PARIS (ESA PR) — ESA is going to the Moon – in collaboration with its international partners – and seeks to build a lasting lunar link to enable sustainable space exploration.

The agency has now evaluated initial ideas to create a network of lunar telecommunications and navigation satellites.

Creating a commercial telecommunications and navigation service for the Moon will allow many of the dozens of planned lunar missions to share the same infrastructure to communicate with Earth, as well as to find their way on the lunar surface.

The service is needed because the planned missions are becoming regular trips to Earth’s natural satellite rather than one-off expeditions.

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SES Adds Third Satellite from Thales Alenia Space to Extend Services across Europe, Africa and Asia

Innovative, flexible, software-defined satellite to replace NSS-12 at 57 degrees East to deliver content and connectivity to hundreds of millions at the crossroads of three continents

LUXEMBOURG, 28 March 2022 (SES PR) -– SES announced today it has ordered SES-26 a fully software-defined geostationary (GEO) satellite from Thales Alenia Space, joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%). SES-26 will maintain and expand the wide range of content delivery and connectivity services to broadcasters, media companies, telco operators, internet service providers and governmental organisations across Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific.

The digital satellite with both Ku-band and C-band frequencies will replace SES’s NSS-12 satellite at 57 degrees East, one of SES’s longest-held and most valuable orbital positions. From this key location at the crossroads of Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia, SES will continue to deliver content and connectivity solutions to some of the world’s fastest-growing markets.

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Leonardo DRS Announces Sale of Global SATCOM Business to SES

RESTON, Va., March 22, 2022 (Leonardo DRS PR) — Leonardo DRS Inc., announced today it has signed a definitive agreement to sell its Global Enterprise Solutions (GES) business to SES for $450 million. The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of Leonardo and of SES. Finalization of the deal is targeted for the second half of 2022 subject to regulatory approvals.

“The DRS GES business is well-respected by its customers and within the satellite communications (SATCOM) provider services market, and we are very pleased with the agreement reached with SES,” said Bill Lynn, CEO of Leonardo DRS. “While the DRS GES business has flourished, Leonardo DRS has shifted its portfolio focus, and selling it now makes the most business sense,” he said.

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SES Orders Two State-of-the-Art Satellites for its Prime TV Neighbourhood Serving 118 Million Homes

ASTRA 1P and ASTRA 1Q satellites (Credit: Thales Alenia Space)

Two satellites at 19.2 degrees East will enable SES’s major European broadcasters’ content distribution operations as well as deliver connectivity services over Europe.

Luxembourg, 18 November 2021 (SES PR) – SES announced today it has ordered two geostationary (GEO) Ku-band satellites for its prime orbital slot at 19.2 degrees East to maintain the premium services it provides to its European video customers and to capture new opportunities in the region. These two replacement satellites – ASTRA 1P and ASTRA 1Q – will be built by Thales Alenia Space, a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%) and are expected to launch in 2024.

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Isotropic Systems and SES Redefine Global Satellite Services with First-Ever Multi-Orbit Field Tests

Credit: Isotropic Systems

Isotropic Systems simultaneously connects multiple SES satellites across separate orbits to converge broadband satellite networks and provide industry-leading quality of service and experience

READING, UK/Luxembourg, 2 November 2021 (Isotropic Systems PR) – Isotropic Systems, the leading developer of transformational multi-link satellite technology, and SES today announced the successful completion of the first-ever simultaneous multi-orbit antenna field tests, a game-changing development empowering a new age of connectivity on land, in the air and at sea for both civil and defense communications.

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Ariane 5 Launches Europe’s Advanced Data-driven Satellite

SES-17 satellite prior to being placed on Ariane 5. (Credit: ESA/CNES/ArianeSpace)

KOUROU, French Guiana (ESA PR) — One of the largest telecommunications satellites ever built in Europe has been launched and is on its way to geostationary orbit.

The satellite includes cutting-edge technology developed under ESA’s programme of Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems. It will connect underserved areas and accelerate digital inclusion, as well as providing broadband connectivity for commercial shipping and aviation through its operator, SES.

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