Viasat Inc., a global leader in satellite communcations, announced today the ViaSat-3 Americas satellite has completed its Final Integrated Satellite Test (FIST) and has now progressed to the Flight Final phase of integration where it is undergoing final build-up to its flight configuration.
FIST is designed to test all the satellite’s payload and bus systems to confirm they function properly following the stresses of mechanical environmental testing, which simulated the launch of the spacecraft. The satellite had already successfully completed mechanical environmental testing and thermal vacuum testing that simulated vacuum and extreme hot and cold conditions of space where the satellite will operate during its expected 15-year lifetime. FIST provided confirmation that the satellite continued to perform as designed following the mechanical and thermal stresses of the prior test phases.
“With the completion of the Final Integrated Satellite Test, we now have final confirmation that the satellite design and build process has produced a spacecraft that is ready for launch. We can now progress to the final buildup for flight and look forward to finishing the satellite soon and preparing it for transport from Boeing’s facility in El Segundo, California to Cape Canaveral, Florida,” said Dave Ryan, president of Space & Commercial Networks at Viasat.
“Completion of FIST is a significant milestone as we move towards spacecraft delivery and launch,” said Ryan Reid, president of Boeing (NYSE: BA) Satellite Systems International. “We’ve validated the design and workmanship of the spacecraft after integration of our powerful 702 platform with Viasat’s ultra-high throughput payload. These are some of the final steps as we prepare the spacecraft for delivery to launch.”
The ViaSat-3 class of Ka-band satellites are expected to provide the best bandwidth economics in the industry with substantial flexibility to move and concentrate that capacity virtually anywhere there is demand – whether it is on land, in the ocean or in the air. The first two satellites are planned to focus on the Americas and EMEA, respectively, and the third satellite is planned to focus on the Asia Pacific region, to complete Viasat’s global service coverage. The ViaSat-3 EMEA satellite is currently undergoing integration with spacecraft partner, Boeing, and the third ViaSat-3 satellite is undergoing final payload integration and testing at Viasat’s Tempe, Arizona facility.