Flight International online news 15:00 GMT: The market for commercial communication satellites is expected to be worth $25.4 billion over the next 10 years, according to a new report from aerospace intelligence company Forecast International.

inmarsat satellite - BIG
                                                       Source: EADS Astrium

In its analysis called: "Commercial Communications Satellites: 2005-2014," Forecast predicts that 224 commercial communications satellites destined for geostationary or medium Earth orbit will be constructed over the next decade.

However, the low-Earth-orbiting (LEO) market, comprised of satellites primarily for providing mobile communications, will see production of just 29 spacecraft, worth only about $114 million says Forecast.

Overall, Forecasts says the order books of manufacturers of commercial communications satellites did not make particularly good reading in 2004.

Of the 12 new commercial communications satellites ordered last year, eight were non-competitive sales, that is, they were either almost guaranteed to go to a certain manufacturer due to issues such as export restrictions or orders that were placed as part of earlier transactions.

But, says Forecast, the market for the application of key technologies and services to commercial consumers and governments is set to grow in the mid-term.

Source: Flight International