The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] today announced the successful on-orbit handover of the Spaceway™ 3 commercial communications satellite to Hughes Network Systems, LLC (HUGHES). Hughes will utilize the Boeing-built satellite to provide HughesNet® broadband-via-satellite services throughout North America.
"Boeing and Hughes have worked side-by-side over the last several months to ensure that we reach this point successfully," said Howard Chambers, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. "Spaceway 3 incorporates state-of-the-art technology and has become the pathfinder to future spacecraft advances that will offer some of the same services to the U. S. Air Force via the Transformational Satellite Communications System (TSAT)."
The successful transfer of the Boeing 702-model satellite to Hughes follows on-orbit testing by Boeing. An Ariane 5 vehicle launched Spaceway 3 on Aug. 14 from Kourou, French Guiana.
"We are excited to accept the handover of Spaceway 3 and to begin our pre-commercial service testing," said Pradman Kaul, chairman and CEO of Hughes. "Since the launch in August, everything has proceeded on schedule, and we are grateful to Boeing for completing the in-orbit placement successfully."
Using a digital processor that provides high-speed Internet protocol-based capabilities, Spaceway 3 will deliver exciting new two-way broadband communications services for enterprise, consumer, small-to-medium-sized businesses and government markets. The digital processor also is a key component of TSAT, and Boeing is the only company that has built a flight-proven packet switch router.
Boeing built the high-powered satellite at its satellite manufacturing facility in El Segundo, Calif. The spacecraft includes downlink phased array antenna, a microwave switch matrix, and flight hardware and software that will provide point-to-point and point-to-multi-point connectivity to Hughes' customers.
For more than 40 years, Boeing has been manufacturing high-quality satellites that have shaped the industry and changed the way people live and work all over the world. From the bent-pipe payloads of the early 1990s to today's broadband, multimedia processors that are equivalent to 10,000 modern personal computer processors, Boeing has increased satellite throughput capability by 20 times.