Now renamed from its original name of Paradigm Secure Communications, Astrium Services is building on the success it has had in supplying satellite communications to the UK’s Ministry of Defence (via Astrium-operated Skynet satellites) and on its past communications contracts with the French military. As a result, the French defence procurement agency (DGA) has awarded Astrium Services and military communications specialist firm Actia Sodielec a 17-year services contract to provide Ka-band miiltary satellite communications based system called “Comcept”.
The service will start in 2014 with communications capacity for the Ka-band service being provided by the Athena-Fidus spacecraft which will be launched later this year. This may be supplemented by Ka-band capacity on other commercial communications spacecraft. The system will be France’s first full-IP military ultra-fast broadband satellite communications network complementing communications in other frequency bands provided by the French Ministry of Defence’s Syracuse satellite system.