Orbital taps MDA to provide communication subsystem for Avanti HYLAS 4 satellite

RICHMOND, BC, 8 Jan. 2016. MacDonald, Dettwiler, and Associates Ltd. (MDA; TSX:MDA), a communications and information company in Richmond, British Columbia, won a contract valued at more than $10 million (Canadian) with Orbital ATK to provide a communication antenna subsystem for the HYLAS 4 high-throughput telecommunication satellite.

Jan 8th, 2016
Orbital taps MDA to provide communication subsystem for Avanti HYLAS 4 satellite
Orbital taps MDA to provide communication subsystem for Avanti HYLAS 4 satellite

RICHMOND, BC, 8 Jan. 2016. MacDonald, Dettwiler, and Associates Ltd. (MDA; TSX:MDA), a communications and information company in Richmond, British Columbia, won a contract valued at more than $10 million (Canadian) with Orbital ATK to provide a communication antenna subsystem for the HYLAS 4 high-throughput telecommunication satellite.

Orbital Sciences Corp. (NYSE:ORB) in Dulles, Va., is building the HYLAS 4 broadband communications satellite, for Avanti Communications Group plc., based on Orbital’s GEOStar-3 satellite platform. The satellite will deliver up to 28 GHz of capacity in 66 fixed beams positioned over Africa and Europe. A portion of the HYLAS 4 capacity will provide growth for Avanti’s existing markets with the remainder available for initiating service to new coverage areas. HYLAS 4 is designed with four steerable beams that also could serve markets in Latin America or Africa.

The HYLAS 4 satellite is being designed, manufactured, and tested at Orbital’s satellite manufacturing facility in Dulles, Va. It is planned for launch by Arianespace in early 2017. HYLAS 4 will be the 27th Orbital-built satellite launched into orbit aboard an Ariane rocket.

“Orbital did an excellent job providing us with the HYLAS 2 spacecraft, our first high-throughput all-Ka-band satellite, which has outperformed its technical specifications since its launch in 2012. We are pleased to once again count on a trusted supplier for the new HYLAS 4 satellite,” says Avanti’s Chief Executive Officer David Williams. “Orbital’s GEOStar-3 satellite platform, with its enhanced payload capabilities, will help Avanti significantly expand its satellite fleet and services in Africa, the Middle East, and Europe.”

The HYLAS 4 satellite’s payload will offer Ka-band services across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region with significantly more capacity than the HYLAS 2 satellite that Orbital built and delivered for Avanti in 2012. In addition, the GEOStar-3-based HYLAS 4 spacecraft will provide Avanti the benefits of higher payload capability while still maintaining advantageous launch costs.

“This high-throughput/light-weight satellite will set a new standard for affordability and flexibility in its class, while also providing the high quality and dependability of Orbital’s reliable GEOStar product line of over 45 geosynchronous spacecraft built or in production for many of the world’s leading operators. We look forward to contributing to Avanti’s future growth with the HYLAS 4 project,” explains David W. Thompson, Orbital’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.

Orbital’s successful communications satellites are based on the company’s GEOStar satellite platform, which is able to accommodate all types of commercial communications payloads. The GEOStar design is optimized for satellite missions requiring up to 8 kilowatts of payload power. The affordable GEOStar-2 and GEOStar-3 satellite platforms can be built and delivered on schedules that are among the shortest in the industry.

Arianespace in Evry, France, will launch Hylas 4 into geostationary transfer orbit (GTO) during the first half of 2017, using an Ariane 5 ECA from the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.

Hylas 4 will be the third Avanti Communications satellite to be launched by Arianespace.

Orbital develops and manufactures small- and medium-class rockets and space systems for commercial, military, and civil government customers. The company’s primary products are satellites and launch vehicles, including low-Earth orbit, geosynchronous-Earth orbit and planetary exploration spacecraft for communications, remote sensing, scientific, and defense missions; human-rated space systems for Earth-orbit, lunar, and other missions; ground- and air-launched rockets that deliver satellites into orbit; and missile defense systems that are used as interceptor and target vehicles. Orbital also provides satellite subsystems and space-related technical services to U.S. Government agencies and laboratories.

Arianespace is a satellite launch company, providing innovation to its customers since 1980, backed by 21 shareholders and the European Space Agency.

MDA is a global communications and information company providing operational solutions to commercial and government organizations worldwide. MDA's business is focused on markets and customers with strong repeat business potential, primarily in the communications sector and the surveillance and intelligence sector. In addition, the company conducts a significant amount of advanced technology development, officials say. MDA's established global customer base is served by more than 4,800 employees operating from 11 locations in the United States, Canada, and internationally.


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