New Delhi / Tokyo / Cannes. 27 May  2024 . Asia’s largest satellite operator SKY Perfect JSAT and Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo (33%), announced they have signed a contract to build JSAT-31, a new generation of software defined satellite based on the Space INSPIRE (INstant SPace In-orbit REconfiguration) platform by Thales Alenia Space.

Operating both in Ka and Ku frequency bands, JSAT-31 High Throughput Satellite will offer high speed broadband services over Japan, South-East Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Pacific islands. JSAT-31 will have the largest capacity in the history of SKY Perfect JSAT satellites and is expected to launch in 2027. JSAT-31, which is the 31st satellite procured by SKY Perfect JSAT counting from JCSAT 1, is the first satellite ordered from Thales Alenia Space. Additionally, starting with this JSAT- 31, SKY Perfect JSAT will be calling their new satellites “JSAT” instead of “JCSAT” and “Superbird”.

As the prime contractor, Thales Alenia Space is responsible for the design, manufacturing, tests and on-ground delivery of the satellite as well as for the ground segment and associated services.

SKY Perfect JSAT’s newest satellite will rely on Space INSPIRE, a highly flexible and fully software- defined solution that offers instant in-orbit adjustment to broadband connectivity demand, while maximizing the effective use of the satellite resources. SKY Perfect JSAT will leverage the satellite’s extreme flexibility to offer enhanced communications services all along JSAT-31’s lifespan in orbit.

“SKY Perfect JSAT is aiming to enhance our overall offering by developing innovative, next- generation satellite communications services that embody ‘high speed, high capacity, high reliability, user-friendliness and competitive pricing’.The new JSAT-31 will play a key role in our infrastructure with its 50Gbps-class capacity and flexibility as a software-defined satellite,” commented SKY Perfect JSAT President and CEO, Eiichi Yonekura. “Amidst significant market shifts, including the entry of new players, JSAT-31 will enable us to meet advanced customer needs and cater to the demands of growing markets, particularly in the expanding global and mobile sectors.”

“Understanding the significance and importance of this project to SKY Perfect JSAT, I wanted to sincerely thank our new customer for putting its trust in our company along with French and European Space agencies, CNES and ESA, for supporting our new Space INSPIRE product line,” commented Thales Alenia Space CEO, Hervé Derrey. “SKY Perfect JSAT will benefit from a state-of-the art telecommunications satellite that provides both a very high performance and a full flexibility in orbit. JSAT-31 is the first telecommunications satellite awarded to Thales Alenia Space in Japan and the first Space INSPIRE satellite in Asia.”

JSAT-31 Summary

1. Satellite Bus Thales Alenia Space: Space INSPIRE platform
2. Satellite Specifications (1)  Frequency bands: Ku and Ka

(2) Primary coverage: Japan, South-East Asia, Australia, New Zealand and Pacific islands

(3)  Target launch date: 2027 (planned)

(4)  Service life: 15 years or more