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SES-12 all-electric satellite successfully launched
SES-12. © Airbus

SES-12 all-electric satellite successfully launched

SES-12, the most powerful all-electric satellite ever, was successfully launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 from Cape Canaveral, Florida on 4th June.

SES-12, the most powerful all-electric satellite ever, was successfully launched on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida on 4th June. Following separation from the launcher, the satellite has completed its initialisation phase and has started electric orbit raising (EOR) operations as planned.

It was the 11th mission of the year for SpaceX. Falcon 9’s first stage for the SES-12 mission previously supported the OTV-5 mission from Launch Complex 39A in September 2017. SpaceX did not attempt to recover Falcon 9’s first stage after launch.

SES-12 is the 13th satellite built by Airbus for SES and the third all-electric satellite built by Airbus in orbit. Its communications payload incorporates multi-beam antennas linked to a digital signal processor, which enable a multitude of basic spectral channels to be allocated to various beams in a completely flexible manner.

The mass saving by using all-electric EOR technology enables SES-12 to combine two high-capacity missions, equivalent to two conventional payloads, in one spacecraft. To fulfil its dual mission, SES-12 features both wide beams and high-throughput spot beams to serve diverse connectivity needs.

The satellite will provide expansion and replacement capacity to serve the fixed data, mobility, government and video sectors in the Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions.

SES-12 will operate in the Ku and Ka-bands with a total of 76 active transponders and eight antennas. Weighing 5,400kg at launch, it has an electrical power of 19kW and will operate in geostationary orbit at the 95° East location for a planned service life of more than 15 years.

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