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Solaris confirms faulty satellite

European satellite operator Solaris Mobile, which is owned by Eutelsat Communications and SES Astra, said that it has filed an insurance claim over the faulty satellite launched on April 3.

Solaris, along with Inmarsat, was awarded spectrum in the 2GHz S-band by the European Commission in May to offer satellite-based media and communications services across the 27 member states of the European Union.

Both providers are likely to have a particular focus on rural customers that are ill-served by existing fixed and wireless offerings and will deliver TV, location-based services, video and radio and internet connectivity.

However, Solaris ran into trouble soon after launch, with the W2A satellite suffering an “anomaly” affecting the unit’s capability to provide services.

This week the company said that an investigation of the satellite’s payload confirmed “significant non-compliance from its original specifications,” resulting in the filing of a claim for the full insured value of the payload.

Solaris also said that the technical findings suggest that the company should be able to offer some, but not all of the services it was planning to offer.


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