Airbus revealed Thursday that it has successfully completed the Preliminary Design Review (PDR) for the Skynet 6A project. The project now has permission to move into the next phase, which leads to the Critical Design Review (CDR).
Airbus was awarded the Skynet 6A contract in July 2020. The contract signed with the U.K. Ministry of Defense’s (MOD) involves the development, manufacture, cyber protection, assembly, integration, test, and launch, of military communications satellite Skynet 6A, which is planned for launch in 2025. The U.K. MOD review board meeting took place in October, and the PDR was achieved in November.
Richard Franklin, managing director of Airbus Defense and Space U.K. said: “This is excellent news and demonstrates our joint commitment to work in partnership to achieve the program schedule. The progress we are making in building the UK MOD’s next generation military satellite and getting to this stage, despite current restrictions, really highlights the flexible and strong working relationship we have built with the Defense Digital team. Skynet 6A, to be built entirely in the UK, will significantly enhance the U.K.’s milsatcoms capability, building on the heritage of the four Skynet 5 satellites which were also built by Airbus, and which are all still operating perfectly in orbit.”