Press Releases

Inmarsat’s Most Powerful Satellite Enters Service

December 10, 2020 Press Releases

GX5 provides enhanced, industry-leading Global Xpress capability for Europe, Middle East
Fully-funded technology roadmap sees a further 7 satellite launches over next 4 years

Inmarsat, the world leader in global, mobile satellite communications, confirms commercial service introduction (CSI) of GX5, the company’s newest, most powerful geostationary satellite to date. GX5 provides additional focused capacity to Europe and the Middle East on the industry-leading Global Xpress (GX) high-throughput satellite wideband service.

The satellite, launched in November 2019, delivers approximately double the combined capacity of the entire existing GX fleet (GX1-GX4), the first and only globally available high-throughput mobile wideband network delivered by a single operator. Together with a significantly expanded ground station network and enhanced cloud-based processing, GX5 supplements the global coverage of GX and supports the rapid growth in customer demand for GX services in the region, particularly for aviation connectivity, as well as government and commercial maritime services.

GX5 heralds the exciting beginning of unprecedented enhancements to the overall capacity, agility, resilience and security embodied by Inmarsat’s SATCOM as a Service delivery model, as well as military Ka-band steerable capabilities that provide access across the full satellite field of view. Inmarsat’s fully funded technology roadmap anticipates a further seven launches by 2024, five in geostationary orbit — adding speed, capacity and resilience – and two in a highly elliptical orbit, which will begin the world’s only commercial mobile wideband service in the commercially and strategically critical Arctic region.

Rupert Pearce, Chief Executive Officer of Inmarsat, said: “As the world leader in global mobile satellite communications, we have an ambitious vision for the future, and we are progressing the most innovative technology development program in our history to achieve this. During these recent unprecedented circumstances, we have supported our partners and customers with the speed and agility for which Inmarsat has become known globally. We are in this for the long haul, with customer and partner trust based on four decades of meeting our commitments and a bright future ahead, guided by our technology roadmap. Entry into service of GX5 is the first of several exciting steps ahead for us on that journey.”

GX is the most successful service launch in the history of Inmarsat. In operation since July 2014, GX has established itself as the gold standard for reliable mobile communications across land, air and sea as well as interoperability with military satellite systems. Tens of thousands of active users throughout aviation, maritime, enterprise and government depend on GX daily, supported by Inmarsat’s network of world leading technology, manufacturing and channel partners.

Peter Hadinger, Chief Technology Officer of Inmarsat, said: “Inmarsat is investing more than ever before to deliver global, highly differentiated technology platforms on which partners and customers can securely invest & innovate for growth. The company’s fully funded technology roadmap will lead to forthcoming launches for our sixth generation of satellites, the I-6s, then on to GX7, 8 & 9 and two Arctic payloads, GX10A and GX10B, to provide further fresh impetus to our GX success story. Our partners and customers can confidently invest in long-term, transformational global digitization strategies based on Inmarsat’s innovative technology roadmap for the future.”

Steve Gizinski, President of Inmarsat Government, said: “GX5 and the forthcoming seven additional GX payloads and satellites further extend Inmarsat’s global leadership in trusted, seamless, secure commercial wideband services, fully integrated into our SATCOM as a Service capability that allows for rapid delivery of proven technology and on-going innovation that covers satellites, ground infrastructure and terminals to provide fast, continuous and cost-effective solutions to address users’ requirements.”

The services delivered over GX5 will be backwards compatible with existing GX terminals, future-proofing customer investment in GX technology and services. Inmarsat partners and customers benefit from the strength, resilience and agility provided by the company, an innovative and diversified business that works in partnership with communities, companies and countries across the world. The flexibility inherent in Inmarsat communications infrastructure and the way in which the company works with partners and customers ensures that they are enabled to address the most complex challenges and opportunities that they face. The introduction of GX5 will take place in phases, as new beams are activated and as additional new terminals become available.

Rupert Pearce concluded: “Anytime and anywhere, our partners and customers are strongly positioned to take advantage of new opportunities as they emerge, based on their ability to deploy our unique portfolio of agile, global, mobile connectivity solutions and services. We believe that reliable, seamless connectivity is now more vital than ever and will play a crucial role in the accelerated adoption of digital technology as the world emerges from Covid-19.”

Global Xpress coverage map with the addition of GX5 (when fully operational = purple overlay for additional capacity for Europe and the Middle East):


New ground stations for GX5 are at:

  • Aussaguel, France: This is a new GX site, and Inmarsat’s first Ka-band antenna at this location.
  • Burum, Netherlands: This will be the first Ka-band gateway hosted at Burum. It has been an Inmarsat site for many years.
  • Cheia, Romania: A new site, Inmarsat’s first Ka-band antenna at this location.
  • Fucino, Italy: This will be the second Inmarsat Ka-band gateway at the Fucino site.
  • Kofinou, Cyprus: This is a new site for Inmarsat.
  • Nemea, Greece: This is the third Inmarsat gateway in Nemea.

Inmarsat’s ground network is expanding from 21 in 2019 to 30 by 2021:

Jonathan Sinnatt/Matthew Knowles
Corporate Communications
Tel: +44 (0)20 7728 1518/1355

About Inmarsat

Inmarsat is the world leader in global, mobile satellite communications. It owns and operates the world’s most diverse global portfolio of mobile telecommunications satellite networks, and holds a multi-layered, global spectrum portfolio, covering L-band, Ka-band and S-band, enabling unparalleled breadth and diversity in the solutions it provides. Inmarsat’s long-established global distribution network includes not only the world’s leading channel partners but also its own strong direct retail capabilities, enabling end to end customer service assurance.

The company has an unrivalled track record of operating the world’s most reliable global mobile satellite telecommunications networks, sustaining business and mission critical safety & operational applications for more than 40 years. It is also a major driving force behind technological innovation in mobile satellite communications, sustaining its leadership through a substantial investment and a powerful network of technology and manufacturing partners.

Inmarsat operates across a diversified portfolio of sectors with the financial resources to fund its business strategy and holds leading positions in the Maritime, Government, Aviation and Enterprise SATCOMs markets, operating consistently as a trusted, responsive and high-quality partner to its customers across the globe.