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Intelsat completes Epic tests

Intelsat says it has successfully completed a series of tests on the compatibility of its EpicNG digital payload with existing ground equipment platforms.

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The EpicNG satellite platform, initially comprised of Intelsat 29e, Intelsat 32e and Intelsat 33e, will utilise multiple frequency bands, wide beams, spot beams and frequency reuse technology, and will add to Intelsat's existing satellite fleet and IntelsatONE terrestrial network.

The launch of Intelsat 29e was initially scheduled for late 2015, but this has now been pushed back to the first quarter of 2016. Intelsat 32e and 33e remain scheduled for the second half of 2016.

“When we conceptualised the Intelsat EpicNG platform design, we wanted to build in technology that would increase performance while also solving operational issues within our customers’ networks,” said Stephen Spengler, deputy CEO at Intelsat.

“This feature of completely flexible beam connectivity is an important early differentiator of the Intelsat EpicNG fleet.  The digital payload will be instrumental in allowing flexible and efficient use of spectrum, resulting in a dramatic increase in the amount of throughput we can deliver on the satellites.”

According to Intelsat, the tests validated protected tactical waveform (PTW) modem performance on the EpicNG digital payload. PTW is a modem standard that is being developed by the US Air Force in an effort to better protect government and commercial satellite communications in multiple frequency bands.

“In addition to efficiency, the technology also increases our ability to mitigate interference and purposeful jamming, which is a very important feature for customers, including those with media and government applications,” said Mr Spengler. 

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