A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket successfully launched the satellite into space on June 6, 2021, from Cape Canaveral, Florida. It completed its in-orbit testing in July 2021. In August more major contracts were signed between SiriusXM and Maxar.
Maxar has been building satellites for SiriusXM since 2000, which includes the first-generation Sirius satellites launched in 2000 and the second-generation Sirius satellites launched in 2009 and 2013. SXM-8 is the ninth high-powered, digital, audio radio satellite built by Maxar for SiriusXM. Built on Maxar’s 1300-class platform and designed to provide more than 15 years of service, SXM-8 is more than 27 feet tall and weighed nearly 7,000 kg at launch. SXM-8 has a large, mesh, unfurlable reflector almost 30 feet in diameter that will allow SiriusXM programming to reach its radios, including those in moving vehicles. “We are proud of our long-standing relationship with SiriusXM and excited to see SXM-8 ready for service to bring entertainment to millions of SiriusXM subscribers,” said Chris Johnson, Maxar’s Senior Vice President of Space Programs Delivery. “The entire Maxar team is committed to excellence, and playing a role in the success of our customers’ missions is what drives us every day.”
Audio entertainment and information services
“We are committed to enhancing our satellite fleet and ability to deliver the best audio entertainment, traffic, weather, data and information services for years to come,” said Bridget Neville, SiriusXM’s Senior Vice President of Satellite and Repeater Systems Engineering and Operations. “We congratulate our engineering team, Maxar and SpaceX on a successful launch and commissioning.” SXM-8 will provide continuous, reliable delivery of SiriusXM’s audio entertainment and information services to consumers in the United States and will expand SiriusXM’s coverage area in Canada and the Caribbean. SXM-8 will extend the health of SiriusXM’s satellite fleet and its satellite-delivered services through at least 2036.
SXM-9 launch in 2024
On August 4, Maxar Technologies announced it received an order to build another geostationary communications satellite for longtime customer SiriusXM. The SXM-9 satellite will be based on Maxar’s proven 1300-class platform and built at the company’s manufacturing facility in Palo Alto, California. It is expected that SXM-9 will launch in 2024. “Maxar’s 1300-class platform has served as a reliable spacecraft platform for decades, and we’re glad to see SiriusXM will rely on its performance once again,” said Robert Curbeam, Maxar Senior Vice President of Space Capture. “We’re looking forward to continuing our decades-long relationship with SiriusXM.”
SXM-10 follows suit
On August 24, following the SXM-9 satellite order, Maxar Technologies announced yet another order to build a geostationary communications satellite for SiriusXM. Following the SXM-9 satellite order, SXM-10, a high-powered digital audio radio satellite, will be built on Maxar’s 1300-class platform at the company’s manufacturing facility in Palo Alto, California. “Maxar has been manufacturing communications satellites for SiriusXM for decades, and we’re proud to continue this relationship for both SXM-9 and SXM-10,” said Chris Johnson, Maxar’s Senior Vice President of Space Programs Delivery.