The pan-Arabic satelite operator Arabsat has finally awarded its construction to in-orbit delivery contract for its Badr-7 (Arabsat 6B) satellite to a consortium of Astrium and Thales Alenia Space. The organisation had originallly selected these two firms to build this satellite in February 2009. As the result of this contract, a launch contract was also signed with Arianespace.
Thales Alenia Space and Astrium are jointly responsible for building the satellite and delivering it in orbit. Astrium is to supply the Eurostar E3000 platform and integrate the satellites. Thales Alenia Space will design and build the communications payload.
The Badr-7 communications satellite will be co-located with other Arabsat satellites at the 26° East location in the Geostationary arc and will provide fdirect-to-home television broadcasts and high-bandwidth broadband services via its payload of 24 Ku-band transponders and 24 Ka spot-beams as well as 3 Ka transponders for additional services. Badr-7 will weigh 6100 kg at launch and have a spacecraft power of 12 kW at the end of its more than 15-year design life. It is planned for launch in late 2015.