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Arabsat issues RFP for four new satellites

Birds to have high-power DTH payloads in Ku, Ka bands

Arabsat has released a request for proposal (RFP) for the procurement of four new satellites. They are to be designated HS3, HS4, ARB6E and ARB6A.

The new satellites, which will be positioned at three orbital locations with coverage over Middle-Eastern, African, Asian and European markets, will have high-power direct-to-home (DTH) payloads in Ku band and Ka-band spot beam capacities.

“The RFP for Arabsat’s sixth-generation satellites reflects the company’s views on the exciting growth opportunities ahead of us and our commitment to capitalise on these opportunities,” says Khalid Balkheyour, Arabsat’s CEO.

The HS3 and HS4 satellites will likely replace Hellas-Sat’s current HS2 satellite at the 39 degrees-East orbital slot. The two new satellites’ additional capacities in Ku- and Ka-band payloads will bring customers greater flexibilities, according to Arabsat. Additionally, HS4 will provide Arabsat with prime Ku-band capacity over Europe and the Mediterranean, complementing its existing in-orbit capacity.

The current Hellas-Sat 2 covers Eastern Europe, part of the Middle East and South Africa.

The ARB6E and ARB6A satellites will provide in-orbit back-up capacity for Arabsat’s customers in addition to accommodating rises in demand for capacity and services over the Middle-east, Africa and Asia.

All four satellites will be launched in 2016 and 2017.