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Podcast: What's the Story? All SES wants for Christmas are MEO satellites


Just in time for the holidays, satellite operator SES plans to launch about a half dozen new medium-Earth orbit (MEO) satellites in mid-December. A second launch is scheduled for January of next year, together with launch partner SpaceX.

The satellites are being manufactured by 30-year partner Boeing at its satellite facility in El Segundo, California. Each O3b mPower satellite utilizes 5,000 beams and is capable of throughput links over 1.5 Tbit/s. SES CTO Ruy Pinto told Light Reading that the satellites cover a number of use cases, delivering "fiber-like connectivity" to customers such as cruise ships and in underserved areas in Africa.

Connecting Africa's Paula Gilbert interviews Light Reading's Kelsey Ziser about her recent tour of Boeing's satellite facility and meeting with SES. Kelsey explains the types of tests conducted on satellites before launch and which customers and regions can access connectivity services from the O3b mPower constellation.

You can download a lightly edited transcript of the podcast here.

Here are a few topics we covered:

  • Background on Boeing's satellite facility. (01:10)
  • SES' O3b mPower satellites will be launched in December and are MEO satellites. (02:11)
  • Addressing bandwidth demands in underserved areas, on cruise ships and more. (03:47)
  • Boeing and SES' 30-year partnership. (05:12)
  • Longevity of the satellites and multicloud partnerships. (06:30)

This podcast was originally published on Connecting Africa's sister site Light Reading.

Related stories and links:

— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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