SpaceX Wins Satellite Launch Contract

Falcon 9 static fire. (Credit: SpaceX)
Falcon 9 static fire. (Credit: SpaceX)

DOHA, Qatar (Es’hailSat PR) — Es’hailSat – Qatar Satellite Company – has announced that following international consultation, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) has been selected to launch the company’s second satellite – Es’hail 2 – in the fourth quarter of 2016 on board a Falcon 9 rocket.

Es’hail 2 is currently under construction by Mitsubishi Electric Corporation in Japan.

A high-performance satellite with Ku-band and Ka-band capabilities, Es’hail 2 will be positioned at the 26 degrees East hotspot position to provide TV distribution and government services to strategic stakeholders and commercial customers who value broadcasting and communications independence, interference resilience, quality of service and wide geographical coverage, according to a statement.

The Es’hail 2 satellite is scheduled to launch in the fourth quarter of 2016 from SpaceX’s Launch Complex 40 at the Air Force Station, Cape Canaveral, Florida, US.

Ali al-Kuwari, CEO of Es’hailSat, said: “We are delighted to have selected SpaceX to launch our second satellite. Now a proven GTO launcher, SpaceX was able to meet our special technical requirements and most importantly to meet the time-critical mission to launch Es’hail 2 at the end of 2016. Securing the launch of Es’hail 2 marks another key milestone in Qatar’s satellite programme and we look forward to working with SpaceX on this important mission.”

“SpaceX is pleased to have been selected to provide launch services for Es’hailSat’s growing fleet of satellites,” said Gwynne Shotwell, president and COO of SpaceX. “The two companies worked closely together to develop a launch solution that enhances the capabilities for the Es’hail 2 mission; SpaceX is proud to partner with Es’hailSat and we look forward to their successful launch.”

Es’hail 1, Qatar’s first satellite, entered commercial service on Qatar National Day in 2013.

 Through its existing and planned satellites, Es’hailSat will broadcast diversified and high-quality premium content with anti-jamming capabilities across the Mena region. Al Jazeera and beIN SPORTS are already using Es’hail 1 capacity for high-definition broadcasting of their premium channels.