Home Applications & Case Studies 3D Printing in Space: Inmarsat relies on SWISSto12’s HummingSat for I-8 Satellites

3D Printing in Space: Inmarsat relies on SWISSto12’s HummingSat for I-8 Satellites

Inmarsat, a satellite communications provider, has announced that SWISSto12 will develop its new eighth generation satellites. The three I-8 satellites will increase network resilience and secure the future of Inmarsat’s global L-band security services. SWISSto12 is also using 3D printing technology in its development.

Switzerland-based SWISSto12 is using specialized 3D printing technologies to design and manufacture its HummingSat satellite platform. These compact geostationary satellites, which are only 1.5 cubic meters in size, are scheduled for launch in 2026.

The three I-8 satellites complement Inmarsat’s existing constellation and I-6 satellites. They are expected to provide additional resilience and enable satellite-based augmentation systems (SBAS), which can be used for applications such as coast guard or air traffic controllers.

Peter Hadinger, Chief Technology Officer, Inmarsat, said “Every single day people around the world depend on Inmarsat services. Our customers have demanding, and often safety critical, missions that rely on our satellite technology for links that can make the difference. The I-8’s will not only underpin our existing capabilities for the future; but enable ever more advanced safety innovations like SBAS that can ultimately help save more lives. We have chosen SWISSto12 because they have the ground-breaking technology that can make it a reality.”

Emile de Rijk, CEO, SWISSto12, said “We are delighted that Inmarsat has selected SWISSto12 as its partner for its landmark l-8 program. It demonstrates that, with HummingSat, we have created a highly-advanced new class of small geostationary spacecraft that delivers world-leading connectivity capabilities at a fraction of the cost. Our proprietary 3D-printing of Radio Frequency payload technology allows us to push the limits of existing capability and service new and existing business cases for geostationary satellite communications. This is an important step in our journey to better connect and protect every corner of the world.”

The I-8 satellites are expected to secure Inmarsat’s global security services into the 2040s. Currently, 1.6 million mariners and more than 200 airlines rely on Inmarsat’s global L-band network. The Inmarsat-8 program is part of Inmarsat’s technology roadmap, which plans five new satellite payloads by 2025.

Find out more about Inmarsat at inmarsat.com.

For more information about SWISSto12, please visit swissto12.com.

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