Watch the launch of the first reprogrammable satelliteS. Himmelstein | August 02, 2021
The Eutelsat Quantum satellite was successfully launched into geostationary transfer orbit on board an Ariane 5 rocket that lifted off from the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana, on July 30. Separation occurred after a 37-minute flight and the satellite is now in geostationary orbit some 36,000 km above Earth.
Built by Airbus Defence and Space as part of a European Space Agency (ESA) Partnership Project, the spacecraft was designed with in-orbit reprogrammable features that will enable users to revise and redirect telecommunications capabilities in response to changing demands during its 15-year service life. The new platform was manufactured by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd and Airbus in Spain supplied the phase array antenna.
Eutelsat Quantum will be located at 48° East and will offer extensive coverage of the Middle East and North Africa and beyond. The satellite can detect rogue emissions, enabling it to respond dynamically to accidental interference or intentional jamming. Each of its eight communication beams can be redirected to move in almost real time to provide information to passengers on board moving ships, planes and land-based transport.