Another step has been taken towards making Europe an even more efficient competitor in the global satellite telecommunications market, with the testing of the new SmallGEO satellite platform at ESTEC, ESA's testing centre in the Netherlands.
SmallGEO will offer a service that is presently unavailable in the European space industry, by filling the gap in the market for small satellite platforms.
SmallGEO is part of the next generation of modular and flexible telecommunications platforms. It is being developed by ESA in partnership with a European consortium headed by the German manufacturer OHB-Systems. Spanish operator Hispasat will be the first to use SmallGEO for its Hispasat AG-1 satellite.
Launch is planned for 2014.