Eutelsat Communications has announced that its two high-power Hotbird 13F and Hotbird 13G satellites have entered into full commercial service. The satellites, built by Airbus Defense and Space, are based on the new generation Eurostar Neo telecommunications satellite platform.
Located at Eutelsat’s 13° East flagship video neighborhood, the Hotbird satellites reinforce and enhance the broadcast quality of around 900 television channels into more than 160 million homes across Europe, Northern Africa, and the Middle East. These satellites also bring advanced features to 13° East, including in-orbit redundancy ability and uplink signal protection and resilience.
The Hotbird video neighborhood hosts 7 premium TV platforms, over 600 pay-TV channels, 300 free-to-air channels, and 500 HDTV and UHD channels. With its unique pan-European coverage, Hotbird reaches 130 million homes in Europe alone. The satellites also distribute TV channels to 90% of cable and IPTV operators in Europe and the MENA region, making 13° East the leading DTH, cable, IP, and DTT provider across the region.
With their entry into service, the Hotbird 13F and Hotbird 13G satellites are replacing three satellites previously located at 13° East to carry out new missions.
Specifically, Hotbird 13G hosts the EGNOS GEO-4 payload, which enables the European Union Agency for the Space Programme (EUSPA) to deliver reliable and secure space-based services. It also provides additional satellite-based augmentation system (SBAS) service capabilities within and beyond the European Union, supporting a growing number of users.
Laurence Delpy, General Manager for the Video Business Unit at Eutelsat, commented on the development, stating that the new satellites at 13° East will provide an ever-improving service to clients across Europe and the MENA region. Eva Berneke, CEO of Eutelsat, added that with these new satellites, Eutelsat ensures continued operational excellence and completes the GNSS network for the EUSPA.
The entry into commercial service of the Hotbird 13F and Hotbird 13G satellites marks an important milestone for Eutelsat in delivering high-quality video services to a wide audience.