The space divisions of the companies EADS and Alcatel have signed with the European Space Agency (ESA) and the National Center of Space Studies (CNES) of France the contract for the development of an European platform of satellites of telecommunications of great capacity, Alphabus. The contract, presented/displayed during the Aeronautical Hall and of the Space of Him Bourget, to the north of Paris, anticipates the production of the first model of this new type of satellites of more than 12 kilowatts of power in the horizon of 2009 and with a cost for the phase of development of about 200 million Euros.
Its main objective is to create satellites of more capacity (up to eight tons of total mass, a payload of 1,000 to 1,200 kilos) and possibilities of managing 1,000 than 200,000 channels more audio television channels and with a life utility of 15 years. Tendrám that to as well be able to compete in the world-wide market with the American equivalents.
The people in charge of the project have shown their confidence in which the Alphabus platform (with satellites among 12 and 18 kilowatts of power) responds to a demand of increasing capacities due to the development of applications like the high resolution television, the broadband, the new services of the movable telephones or other civil utilities, but also the military.
Both industrial partners, EADS Astrium and Alcatel Space, will distribute the load to equal parts, although each will be specialized in certain activities.
EADS Astrium will take care in particular of the power supply, the solar paddles or integration, whereas Alcatel Space has the responsibility of the mechanics, the thermal one, avionics or the electrical propulsion, explained in the company/signature act the president of this last French company, Pascale Sourisse.
In the distribution of the weight of the project, the CNES will by itself contribute 40 million Euros, whereas THAT puts the 160 rest, of which a 35% will correspond to the French participation in the European Space Agency.
They follow to him by importance, between the ten of countries implied altogether Germany, Italy, Spain (with 10 million Euros) and Switzerland, and with participation still more reduced Belgium, Holland, Poland and Ireland.
The president of EADS Astrium, Antoine Bouvier, emphasized that the new platform will allow to introduce more competition in the market of the communications satellites, and in particular in those of great capacity, that in his opinion have vocation to be developed in view of the new services of the operators of telecommunications.
In that sense, Sourisse he considered that the satellites of the size and the capacity of the Alphabus are going to represent around the 10% of the world-wide market, that at present is of a fortnight of units to the year, but that trusts that it recovers and it rises to a twenty.