Globalstar, represented in Australia by Pivotel , have announced the key operational milestones and associated timetable for the upcoming launch of Globalstar second-generation satellite constellation. The advanced second-generation constellation, which secures Globalstar's space segment beyond the year 2025, will be the world’s newest commercial satellite network. The deployment of the constellation is expected to afford the Company up to a five-year competitive advantage over its primary mobile satellite services (MSS) competitor, which still has not yet named a manufacturer for its second-generation satellites.
Globalstar began the planning phase for its new constellation in 2005, more than five years ago, and the Company signed an agreement with satellite manufacturer Alcatel Alenia Space (now Thales Alenia Space) in 2006. Since then Globalstar has overcome operational challenges and completed many significant milestones, including a 2009 $738 million financing, in order to be in a position to make today’s announcement.
A few of the key accomplishments to date include:
- March 2007 - Globalstar signs contract with Alcatel Alenia Space (Thales) to upgrade satellite operations and control center
- September 2007 − Globalstar signs launch services contract with Arianespace for Globalstar’s second-generation constellation
- May 2008 – Globalstar signs agreement with Hughes Network Systems to develop proprietary satellite air interface and delivery of next-generation ground network equipment, software upgrades and satellite handset chipset
- August 2008 - Satellite manufacturer Thales Alenia Space begins production assembly, integration, and testing of the first Globalstar second-generation flight model satellites
- October 2008 – Globalstar signs agreement for second-generation network ground core network segment with Ericsson Federal
- July 2009 – Globalstar completes $738 million financing to fully fund manufacture and launch of 24 new Globalstar second-generation satellites
- Globalstar begins construction of final telemetry and control unit (TCU) ground station in Southern Africa
- January 2010 – Globalstar announces launch window for the first launch of six second-generation satellites is scheduled to begin on July 5th.