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Boeing On Schedule To Deliver Worlds First All Electric Satellites

March 24, 2014 - Boeing is on track to deliver the world's first all electric propulsion satellites in late 2014 or early 2015 as it has met key production milestones on its initial 702SP (small platform) satellites. 

Boeing recently completed static qualification testing, verification and assembly of the primary structures for 702SP inaugural customers ABS and Eutelsat, with the spacecraft scheduled to be launched as a pair in a stacked configuration. The initial contract was signed in 2012 between Boeing and Satmex. Eutelsat acquired Satmex in January 2014. 

"We will be first to launch a commercial all electric satellite, providing customers new flexibility and next-generation technology for increased performance," said Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space & Intelligence Systems. "The all-electric propulsion design gives customers more affordable launch options and the ability to nearly double payload capacity." 

Boeing is building two pairs of 702SP satellites under a joint four-satellite agreement with ABS and Eutelsat. Production on the 702SP satellites began in 2013, after the spacecraft passed its critical design review. 

Beginning in 2012, Boeing began manifesting all-electric propulsion commsats on the 702SP propulsion bus for eventual location in Geosynchronous orbit. These satellites are the first which will be launched with the intent to fully position the satellites using electric propulsion, thus requiring four to six months following launch to ready the satellite for its communication mission, but at substantial reduction in launch mass and, therefore, launch cost. 

As of March 2014, Boeing has sold four of the 702SP satellites to Asia Broadcast Satellite (ABS) of Hong Kong and Mexico's SatMex, with the first two commsats planned for a paired launch in early 2015 aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9.



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