Eutelsat Communications successfully launched its KA-SAT satellite on Boxing Day 2010. The 6.1 tonne satellite will offer internet connectivity for more than one million homes at speeds comparable to ADSL, boosting Eutelsat’s existing Tooway consumer broadband service to a maximum 10 Mbps. The satellite is expected to enter commercial use at the end of May 2011.
Michel de Rosen, Eutelsat CEO, said “We are delighted to confirm that our KA-SAT satellite is now on its way to 9° East, and thank ILS and Khrunichev for this new launch success. KA-SAT will be the cornerstone of a breakthrough infrastructure deployed by Eutelsat for users across Europe and the Mediterranean Basin. By combining a satellite equipped with more than 80 spotbeams and a network of ground stations, this new programme will deliver more capacity than any other satellite programme deployed worldwide. These new resources will in particular benefit Internet Service Providers, enabling them to extend broadband to consumers and enterprises in areas unserved by terrestrial networks. KA-SAT will also consolidate Eutelsat’s Professional Data Network activity, which generates 15% of our revenues, with solutions for enterprises and public administrations that drive down costs of terminals and bandwidth. The launch of KA-SAT is further evidence of the sustained commitment to investment and innovation that Eutelsat has successfully pursued, with the objective of increasing the contribution of satellites to a booming digital economy.”