Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) will provide the launch services for Germany’s second-generation SARah radar reconnaissance satellite system. The three SARah satellites, provided by OHB System AG and Astrium GmbH, will replace the current constellation and will be delivered to orbit by two Falcon 9 rockets in 2018 and 2019. Appreciating the coup in have a European nation select a non-European launch provider, Gwynn Shotwell, SpaceX President and COO said via a news release: “SpaceX looks forward to working with OHB and Astrium, and we appreciate their confidence in SpaceX to reliably deliver these satellites to orbit.” “These missions are very meaningful for SpaceX as the first contracted for a European government.” Shotwell added.
OHB will build two passive reflector-antenna synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellites of the SARah constellation, and Astrium GmbH will build a larger, phased-array-antenna satellite under contract for OHB. The three-satellite constellation will replace the current OHB-built five-satellite SAR-Lupe constellation.