Arabsat signs contract with SpaceX to launch 7A satellite

Arabsat 7A is expected to replace the bulk of the existing C and Ku-band capacity on Arabsat 5A as the satellite reaches the end of its life.

Photo credit: Thales Alenia Space

Arab Satellite Communications Organization (Arabsat) has selected SpaceX’s Falcon 9 to launch its new satellite, Arabsat 7A.

Arabsat 7A is a software-defined satellite that Thales Alenia Space is building based on its Space Inspire platform.

Arabsat 7A will join 6A and 5A at its data hotspot at 30.5E. It will replace the bulk of the existing C and Ku-band capacity on Arabsat 5A as this satellite reaches end-of-life to ensure a seamless transition for customers and partners.

It will also offer high-throughput Ku-band capacity to help the operator expand its services into several verticals to enhance its portfolio of products and solutions across the Middle East, Africa and beyond, to parts of Europe.

SpaceX will also launch the Badr-8 satellite by Arabsat next year.

Speaking about the deal, Al-Hamedi Al-Anezi, CEO of Arabsat, said: “We value our work with SpaceX. The signing of this agreement is an extension of the trusted relationship with SpaceX that has been built over the past few years since the launch of Arabsat 6A. Arabsat 7A will be one of Arabsat’s first software-defined payload satellites, offering high throughput Ku-band capacity to help Arabsat expand its services into several verticals to enhance its portfolio of products and solutions over the Middle East, Africa and beyond, to parts of Europe.”

SpaceX Vice President of Commercial Sales Tom Ochinero added: “We’re excited to be selected for our third Arabsat launch. Having worked together on the Falcon Heavy launch of Arabsat 6A and the upcoming launch of Badr-8, our work with Arabsat is a testament to our Falcon fleet’s reliability and safety.”

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