Maxar gets Intelsat 40e construction order and NASA robot arm demo contract

by | Feb 3, 2020 | NASA, Satellites, Seradata News, Technology

US firm Maxar is celebrating the award to it of two orders. Maxar’s SSL division (the former Space Systems/Loral) has been awarded the construction order by the Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO) communications satellite operator Intelsat for its planned Intelsat 40e satellite. The spacecraft will be launched in 2022. The spacecraft will be based on the SSL-1300 bus/platform design and will be an addition to the Intelsat Epic fleet and will provide high throughput services to the Americas. The exact financial worth of the contract has not been disclosed.

Note that this contract was originally signed in November 2019 as an undisclosed identity order.

Artist’s impression of Intelsat 40e with the NASA TEMPO payload in orbit. Courtesy: Maxar

The Intelsat 40e spacecraft is unusual in that it is carrying a hosted scientific payload for NASA called TEMPO. TEMPO is a UV-visible spectrometer that will detect pollutants by measuring sunlight reflected and scattered from the Earth’s surface and atmosphere. The resulting data from TEMPO will be used to enhance air-quality forecasts in North America, enabling the more effective early public warning of pollution incidents. Maxar was formally selected to host TEMPO by NASA in 2019 with the work being done as part of a Space and Missile Systems Centre Hosted Payload Solutions (HoPS) contract.

In a separate development, Maxar has been awarded a contract worth US$142 million by NASA to demonstrate robot arm technology aboard the planned Restore-L servicing satellite which Maxar is building for NASA and which will be launched in 2025. The robot arm – dubbed the Space Infrastructure Dextrous Robot (SPIDER) will be used to construct a large antenna from component parts.


About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to

Related Articles

SSLV failure cause: Violent second stage separation triggered chain of events which prevented SSLV final stage burn to stable orbit

The failure investigation set up by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) into the launch failure of the maiden flight Read more

Starlink Group 5-3 is launched by a SpaceX Falcon 9

At 0758 GMT on 2 February 2023  a Falcon 9v1.2FT Block 5 successfully launched 53 Starlink Gen2 satellites (Group 5-3) Read more

South Korea confirms shift of two missions from Russian launchers; Kompsat 6 goes to Arianespace and CAS500-2 goes back to international market

The South Korean vice-minister for Science, Oh Tae-seog, announced on 1 February 2023 that they had selected an Arianespace Vega Read more

SpaceX launches another batch of Starlinks plus ION-SCV9 delivery spacecraft testing separation system

A Falcon 9v1.2FT Block 5 was launched from the Vandenberg Space Force base in California at 1615 GMT on 31 Read more

US sanctions SPACETY for supplying radar imagery to Russian Wagner Group in Ukraine

Just as Ukraine's military campaign has been supported by US commercial spacecraft operating firms — with SpaceX and Maxar providing Read more

SpaceX Falcon 9 launches Starlink Group 5-2

On 26 January 2023, at 0932 GMT, a Falcon 9v1.2FT Block 5 successfully launched 56 Starlink Gen2 satellites from Space Read more

Tianwen 1 mission’s Zhurong-1 Mars rover may have expired in its sleep

SpaceNews reports (quoting the South China Morning Post) that the Zhurong 1 Mars rover as part of the Tianwen 1 Read more

Japan completes its first launch of the year of the radar reconnaissance satellite IGS RADAR-7

Kicking off its launch year, Japan has placed a radar reconnaissance satellite into near-500 km sun-synchronous low Earth orbit (LEO). Read more