UK Approves Skynet 5 Development

Released on Thursday, October 23, 2003
United Kingdom
Skynet 5
RAF - Royal Air Force
The British Ministry of Defense has announced the development of the state of the art, strategic satellite communications system Skynet 5 with the signature of a £2.5 billion ($4 billion) contract.

The British-based Paradigm Consortium, a wholly owned subsidiary of EADS, will be responsible for the entire Skynet 5 communications system and about 1,900 jobs will be created or sustained across the United Kingdom thanks to this project.

Skynet 5 satellite communications system will provide secure and reliable communications to British Armed forces deployed overseas and on the battlefield.

The Paradigm Consortium will take care of designing and production of 2 satellites, launch services and corresponding ground segment, to provide secure and reliable military communications over the next 15 years.

The Skynet 5 satellite communications system will achieve initial operational capability in 2005 and will extend through 2018. The British Army, RAF and Royal Navy will benefit from Skynet 5.

The two Skynet 5 satellites, weighing about 2.5-3 tons each, will take over orbital location currently owned by Skynet 4 satellite constellation as they reach the end of their useful life.


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