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Monday, October 3, 2022

SpaceX to Launch Arabsat’s 7A Satellite on a Falcon 9 

A rendering of Arabsat-7a. Photo: Thales Alenia Space

Arabsat has tapped SpaceX for launch once again, selecting the Falcon 9 rocket to launch its 7A satellite, the companies announced Wednesday. Arabsat 7A is a software-defined satellite that Thales Alenia Space is building based on its Space Inspire platform. Neither Arabsat, Thales, or SpaceX has specified a target launch year for the satellite. 

The satellite will join Arabsat 6A and 5A at its data hotspot at 30.5 degrees East, replacing most of the C- and Ku-band capacity for the aging Arabsat 5A satellite. The company also said the satellite will help expand services into several verticals over the Middle East, Africa, and to parts of Europe.

SpaceX previously launched Arabsat-6A on a Falcon Heavy in 2019, and will launch the operator’s BADR-8 satellite on Falcon 9 next year.

“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 CEO Al-Hamedi Al-Anezi said. “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.”

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