Intelsat chooses SWISSto12 to build Intelsat 45, a landmark for next generation geostationary satellites


Intelsat becomes first commercial customer for SWISSto12’s innovative HummingSat geostationary telecommunications satellite, developed with its patented 3D printing technology in collaboration with the European Space Agency

Lausanne, Switzerland, November 07 2022

SWISSto12, Switzerland’s fastest-growing aerospace company and a leading manufacturer of advanced satellite payloads and systems, and Intelsat, operator of the world’s largest integrated satellite and terrestrial network today announced that SWISSto12 will produce the Intelsat 45 satellite based on its innovative HummingSat product line.

Scheduled for launch in 2025, Intelsat 45 (IS-45) will provide Ku-band fixed-satellite services enabling Intelsat to provide specialized and efficient service to Media and Network customers.

Dr. Emile de Rijk, SWISSto12 founder and CEO, said: “The award of the IS-45 program by Intelsat is a landmark moment for SWISSto12. We are humbled to embark on this journey with Intelsat, who are the foundational architects of satellite communications. It is unprecedented for a specialist high growth scale up to secure a contract of this depth with a leading telecommunications operator. It provides a solid start to our HummingSat product line to open a new chapter in the satellite communications industry”

Jean-Luc Froeliger, SVP Space Systems at Intelsat, said: “The SWISSto12 product brings two innovations to meet our business needs. The small size addresses a gap in our fleet strategy, enabling us to be increasingly more targeted to meet specific customer requirements. In addition, the additive-manufacturing process used for this spacecraft is paving the way for faster satellite build cycles in the future. We are confident in the HummingSat technology and want to support the success of new players in the field of commercial communication satellites.”

SWISSto12’s HummingSat is a small, innovative telecommunications satellite developed in collaboration with the European Space Agency (ESA) through its public-private-partnership program. Benefiting from unique and patented 3D printing technologies.

Named after the tiny, agile, fast-moving and yet apparently stationary hummingbird, HummingSats are just over one cubic metre in volume, which is three to ten times smaller than conventional satellites that are placed in geostationary orbit, some 36 000 kilometres above Earth. It complements the much larger legacy spacecrafts commercialized by established companies, by providing a cost-effective opportunity to boost and expand capacity where needed. Each HummingSat is designed to launch as a rideshare mission on a rocket carrying one or more large spacecraft to orbit. The new satellite product line recently passed its system requirements review, assessed by a panel of ESA experts.

Press Contacts

Geordie Hazeel, Keskt CNC – [email protected] – +49 162 2694982

Maximillian Fett, Keskt CNC – [email protected] – +49 174 6390222



Intelsat press release:


SWISSto12 is a leading manufacturer of advanced satellite payloads and systems, including the HummingSat: a small yet powerful geostationary telecommunications satellite. The company’s satellites and payloads benefit from unique and patented 3D printing technologies and associated Radio Frequency (RF) product designs that deliver lightweight, compact, highly performing, and competitive RF functionality.

Besides its space portfolio, the company is also active in telecommunications and surveillance applications for the aeronautic industry. SWISSto12 has developed commercially with success in Europe and in the USA, and is the fastest growing Swiss aerospace company. SWISSto12 spun off in 2011 from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), is privately owned and backed by prominent Swiss and European Investors. Learn more about us:


As the foundational architects of satellite technology, Intelsat operates the world’s most trusted satellite telecom network. We apply our unparalleled expertise and global scale to connect people, businesses, and communities, no matter how difficult the challenge.

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