Inmarsat confirms its second Global Xpress (GX) satellite (Inmarsat-5 F2), due to launch early in 2015, has arrived at Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
Inmarsat-5 F2 is the second of three satellites that will form Inmarsat’s GX fleet, providing seamless, global, high-speed broadband on land, sea and in the air. When in orbit, Inmarsat-5 F2 will cover the Americas and the Atlantic ocean.
“The arrival of Inmarsat-5 F2 to the launch site in Baikonur demonstrates that we will be able to offer our high-speed Ka-band service, GX Aviation, early in the second half of 2015,” says Leo Mondale, President, Inmarsat Aviation. “The ground networks are in place and Honeywell will start transmission testing of the airborne satellite communications equipment imminently – we’re right on track to deliver this world-leading global network to our partners and airlines.”
The first satellite, Inmarsat-5 F1, launched at the end of 2013 and has delivered regional commercial services over Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia since July of this year.
A third satellite, Inmarsat-5 F3, has passed its final testing and will ship to Kazakhstan early in 2015. This satellite will complete the Global Xpress constellation, providing coverage over the Pacific Ocean.
GX service is scheduled to start early in the second half of 2015, according to Inmarsat.
AvGeeks might like to know that F2 enjoyed a first-class flight from LAX to Kazakhstan in an Antonov AN-124.
If you’re interested in learning more about the escalating race for superiority in the In-Flight Connectivity market, you might want to read my latest article on Skift about the feud over WiFi in the US skies.