Iridium Communications has sent five spare satellites to orbit as part of its 10-year constellation resilience plan and in an effort to ensure continued delivery of critical network services to end users.
The company announced Saturday that it launched additional spare satellites on the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, bringing its on-orbit spacecraft to 14.
In 2019, Iridium finished upgrades to its network and introduced Certus, a weather-resilient L-band broadband service that can be used on land, air and maritime vehicles, as well as unmanned autonomous transport or tactical systems.
After deployment, the latest batch of spare satellites passed transmission tests with Iridium’s Satellite Network Operations Center in Virginia.
“The completion of our upgraded constellation was a major milestone in the history of Iridium,” said CEO Matt Desch. “With all the new products and services enabled by our network, the launch of these spares shows our commitment to maintaining the gold standard of satellite network services,” added the nine-time Wash100 awardee.
To date, 80 of 81 next generation satellites have been launched by Iridium.