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TECH SPACE
New Multi-Year LTA With EADS Astrium To Power All GEO Satellites
by Staff Writers
Paris, France (SPX) Jul 02, 2010


A number of Eurostar E3000 satellites will feature Saft's latest Li-ion technology in the form of the new VES 180 cells that offer the highest specific energy (Wh/kg) of any battery chemistry currently available.

Saft has signed a new multi-year LTA (Long Term Agreement) with Astrium to supply the onboard lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery modules for every Eurostar GEO (Geosynchronous Earth Orbit) communications satellite to be built over the next years. This latest LTA renews and extends the previous agreement between Saft and Astrium that commenced in 2006.

The new LTA covers the supply of the onboard battery modules, built with Saft's high-energy VES140 and VES 180 cells, for the latest version of the Eurostar GEO platform, the E3000.

The Li-ion batteries will provide a compact, weight-saving source of reliable backup power to maintain the continuous operation of the satellites during the twice-yearly eclipse periods when their solar panels are not able to generate sufficient electrical power.

"Saft and Astrium have worked in close cooperation since the mid 1990s and together we were the first to successfully demonstrate Li-ion batteries in orbit, starting a revolution in communications satellite power," says Philippe Jehanno, General Manager of Saft's Space and Defence Division.

"This new and extended LTA further consolidates our relationship with this major prime contractor and also reinforces Saft's position as Europe's leading supplier of battery systems for GEO satellite projects."

A number of Eurostar E3000 satellites will feature Saft's latest Li-ion technology in the form of the new VES 180 cells that offer the highest specific energy (Wh/kg) of any battery chemistry currently available. This will enable the satellite designers to save weight on the battery so that more of the payload can be utilized for revenue earning equipment.

The VES 140 and VES 180 cells are manufactured in Saft's industrial factory in Bordeaux, France and integrated into battery modules and fully tested at Saft's facility In Poitiers, France, before delivery to Astrium in Toulouse for assembly of the E3000 satellite batteries.

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