Inmarsat has confirmed the successful launch of its third satellite in the transformational Global Xpress (GX) constellation. Inmarsat-5 F3 (I-5 F3), which was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 12.44pm (BST), entered orbit this morning at 04.15 am (BST) following a 15 hour and 31 minute mission.
Over the coming weeks, the Inmarsat Operations Team will raise I-5 F3 to its final orbit, deploy its solar arrays and reflectors, and undertake payload testing. At the end of these procedures, I-5 F3 will be ready to join the first two GX satellites, which are already in orbit and operating successfully, to create the first, globally available, high-speed mobile broadband network delivered by a single operator.
Rupert Pearce, CEO of Inmarsat, said: “We have been working towards this day ever since we announced plans to create the Global Xpress constellation in 2010. I am delighted that we now have three Global Xpress satellites in orbit, enabling us to provide global GX services by the end of the year.
“This is a significant milestone for Inmarsat; one that will offer major growth opportunities and promises to change the face of our industry.