March 15, 2010

SSTL And Dutch Space Level Geostationary Market With ‘Piggy Back’ Platform

Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) and Dutch Space BV have joined forces to develop and exploit an innovative small geostationary platform that is specifically designed to utilize excess launch vehicle capacity, creating opportunities for lower cost geostationary missions.

Under a teaming agreement announced today, SSTL will market the Dutch Space CX2 satellite platform under the name GMP-CX as part of its geostationary mission product range.

Measuring just 1.25m high and with a diameter of 2.6m when stowed, the GMP-CX is capable of carrying payloads of up to 250kg with up to 2.5kW power consumption, but its innovative form factor means that it can utilize launch vehicle fairing space which is normally unexploited. The new platform also uses SSTL's Geostationary Mini-satellite Platform (GMP) avionics.

Commenting on the teaming agreement, SSTL's Director of Telecommunications and Navigation Dr. John Paffett stated "This is an exciting addition to the SSTL geostationary platform family. Entry cost is a significant barrier to many geostationary applications and services and the addition of the GMP-CX will allow this barrier to be reduced, opening up this market to customers. We are looking forward to working closely with Dutch Space to bring this product to market."

Lowering GMP-CX's in-orbit delivery cost is intended to stimulate new markets, customers and applications that would otherwise be deterred by the high cost of geostationary satellite procurement and launch.

The low cost of entry of this platform, combined with SSTL's proven systems and methodologies, make it suitable for a range of typical telecommunications and navigation applications, but also for new missions such as deep space science that may otherwise be ruled out by budgetary constraints.


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