Astranis supplies Orbith with MicroGEO sat to serve Argentina

Astranis supplies Orbith with MicroGEO sat to serve Argentina

Start-up satellite manufacturer and operator Astranis said on Monday it has struck a new partnership with Latin American ISP Orbith to provide a dedicated MicroGEO communications satellite for Argentina.

Orbith currently leases capacity from Spanish satellite operator Hispasat and Argentinian state-owned Arsat to provide satellite communications services for customers across Latin America, including hospitals, schools, businesses and consumers.

However, said Orbith CEO Pablo Mosiul, leasing capacity presents challenges of availability and price that Orbith says has held it back from expanding its footprint in countries like Argentina.

“This dedicated MicroGEO communications satellite from Astranis will be a massive accelerator for our plans in Argentina,” Mosiul said. “Having a satellite specifically tailored to our needs, and to the demand that we see from our customers in the country, is a massive competitive advantage that will help us expand our coverage across the country.”

Astranis will build and operate the satellite for Orbith. Astranis co-founder and CEO John Gedmark said in a blog post that the new partnership with Orbith “is a great opportunity to expand our services to another fast-growing market, and to work with a local partner who deeply understands the communications needs of the Argentinian people.”

Orbith’s partnership with Astranis dates back to May 2023, when Orbith told BNamericas that it had contracted Astranis to build and operate its first dedicated satellite offerin g high throughput (HTS) internet connectity using the Ka-band.

Astranis’ MicroGEO satellites weigh under 500kg and use software-defined radios that allow different frequencies to be programmed after launch based on customer demand. One tradeoff of this design is that the lifespan of a MicroGEO satellite is around eight years – half the life of a traditional geostationary satellite.

Astranis launches its MicroGEO satellites in batches to save launch costs. The Orbith satellite will be included in Astranis’ Block 3 launch in 2025. That launch will also include the recently announced Thaicom-9 satellite, as well as one satellite for Orbits Corp of the Philippines, and two for Mexican operator Apco Networks.

Another Orbits satellite is scheduled for Astranis’ Block 2 launch later this year, along with two satellites for US company Anuvu for maritime and aviation connectivity. Block 2 will also launch UtilitySat, which will temporarily replace Astranis’ first MicroGEO satellite, Arcturus, which suffered a failure shortly after launch due to faulty component in its solar array.

“With this program, Astranis’s next two full launches of MicroGEO satellites are sold and spoken for,” Gedmark said.


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