-- Company to Build Ka-band Spacecraft to Provide Broadband Communications Services to Europe, the Middle East and Africa ---- HYLAS 2 Is 29th Order for Orbital-Built GEO Satellite Since 2001 --
DULLES, Va., Dec 21, 2009 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE: ORB) announced today that it has signed a contract with London-based Avanti Communications Group plc for a new geosynchronous (GEO) communications satellite. The spacecraft, to be named HYLAS 2, will be based on Orbital's industry-leading STARTM 2.4 satellite platform. The satellite is scheduled for delivery in early 2012. When the HYLAS 2 satellite is placed into commercial service following its launch and in-orbit testing, Avanti will more than triple the satellite capacity that it will offer with its first Ka-band satellite, HYLAS 1, which is scheduled to be launched in the first half of 2010. Specific financial terms of the contract were not disclosed; however the Export-Import Bank of the United States will provide funding for the project.

"With this most recent communications satellite order, Orbital has again demonstrated our position as the world's leading provider of small-class GEO commercial satellites," said Mr. Michael Larkin, Orbital's Executive Vice President and General Manager of its Space Systems Group. "From the world's largest satellite operators, including Intelsat and SES, to regional operators such as Telenor, Optus, and now Avanti, Orbital provides the highest levels of product reliability, the most comprehensive support, and the best overall value to all our customers. These same attributes are also designed into our higher-power Star 2.7 spacecraft that has evolved from our current product line and which will serve as our entry into the market for satellites that generate up to 7.5 kilowatts of payload power."

The HYLAS 2 satellite will carry 24 active Ka-band user beams and four gateway beams, and will produce approximately 5.0 kilowatts of payload electrical power. The Ka-band spot beams will provide two-way communications services to facilitate high-speed delivery of data to end-user applications such as corporate networking, broadband Internet access, business continuity services and video distribution. Using the HYLAS 2 spacecraft, Avanti will provide its data and video services to Northern and Southern Africa, Eastern Europe and the Middle East. In addition, the spacecraft will be equipped with a steerable spot beam, also operating at Ka-band, which can provide coverage anywhere on Earth that is visible to the satellite.

Mr. David Williams, CEO of Avanti, said, "We are very pleased to be working with Orbital to provide Avanti with our second broadband satellite, which will clearly establish Avanti as the first provider and clear leader in broadband services via Ka-band satellites throughout Europe and large portions of Africa and the Middle East. Together with our well established network of distribution partners and telecommunications service partners, we are uniquely positioned to deliver the best value of broadband services via satellite."

The contract with Avanti for the HYLAS-2 satellite is the second order this month for Orbital's GEO communications spacecraft. Last week, the company announced that Intelsat, S.A. had awarded it a contract for the IS-23 spacecraft, the 10th Orbital-built spacecraft that will be deployed into the Intelsat fleet. Since 2001, customers around the world have ordered a total of 29 GEO communications satellites from Orbital. Including the order from Avanti, Orbital currently has nine GEO satellites in various stages of design, manufacturing, testing and pre-launch preparations, and has options for three additional satellites that could be exercised in the future.

About Avanti

Avanti Communications Group plc is the United Kingdom's only Fixed Satellite Services (FSS) operator. Avanti's first satellite - HYLAS 1 - will be launched in the first half of 2010 and will be Europe's first dedicated broadband and all Ka-band satellite providing high powered BSS and FSS capacity across Europe. In business for over 10 years, Avanti is the leading provider of satellite broadband services. Avanti sells satellite broadband services to telecommunications companies using leased satellite capacity, which it will transfer to HYLAS-1 upon launch. The demand for 2 Mb satellite broadband products in the markets served in Europe, Middle East and Africa is estimated at more than 100 million households. Avanti is listed on the London Stock Exchange AIM (AVN.L). For more information, visit the company's web site at www.avantiplc.com.

About Orbital

Orbital develops and manufactures small- and medium-class rockets and space systems for commercial, military and civil government customers. The company's primary products are satellites and launch vehicles, including low-Earth orbit, geosynchronous-Earth orbit and planetary spacecraft for communications, remote sensing, scientific and defense missions; human-rated space systems for Earth-orbit, lunar and other missions; ground- and air-launched rockets that deliver satellites into orbit; and missile defense systems that are used as interceptor and target vehicles. Orbital also provides satellite subsystems and space-related technical services to government agencies and laboratories. More information about Orbital can be found at http://www.orbital.com.

SOURCE: Orbital Sciences Corporation

Orbital Sciences Corporation
Barron Beneski, 703-406-5528
Public and Investor Relations