July 10, at 3:55 pm local time in French Guiana, Arianespace successfully performed its second launch for O3b Networks, following the successful launch of the operator’s first four satellites last year.
With this eighth Soyuz launch from the Guiana Space Center, all successful, Arianespace proves its long-term support for new operators and helps reduce the world’s digital divide.
The O3b mission will provide low-cost, high-speed Internet access to the ìother 3 billionî people on Earth.
Arianespace lofted four more satellites in the O3b constellation (the “Other 3 billion”) into an equatorial orbit. Built by Thales Alenia Space as prime contractor, these four satellites will enable O3b Networks to supply broadband Internet access at moderate prices to emerging markets in Asia, Africa, Latin America, Australia and the Middle East, totaling nearly 150 countries surrounding the equator where broadband access is rarely available. Following this launch, the O3b constellation will be deployed in its initial configuration and will be fully operational.
Arianespace’s partnership with O3b clearly reflects one of the company’s basic values, namely making the benefits of space available to people on Earth.