Watch SiriusXM’s high-powered SXM-7 satellite launch aboard a SpaceX rocket

The satellite will provide continuous delivery of SiriusXM’s audio entertainment and information services in the U.S., and will expand coverage area in Canada and the Caribbean.

Matt Simeone
December 13, 2020

Credit: SpaceX

SiriusXM, Maxar Technologies, and SpaceX announced that SXM-7, a high-powered audio radio satellite, successfully launched aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

Shortly afterward, SXM-7 deployed its solar arrays and started receiving and sending signals. Next, SXM-7 will begin firing its thrusters to commence its journey to its final geostationary orbit.

The satellite 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, for years to come. SXM-7 will deliver the highest power density of any commercial satellite on orbit, sending more than 8,000 watts of content to the continental U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean, increasing the power and reach of the signal for SiriusXM.

SXM-7 weighs almost 7,000 kg and is built on Maxar Technologies’ 1300-class platform, the world’s most prevalent geosynchronous spacecraft platform. The satellite is designed to provide service for greater than 15 years. Maxar has previously built a total of seven satellites for SiriusXM, including its first-generation Sirius satellites that launched in 2000 and its second-generation Sirius satellites that launched in 2009 and 2013.

SXM-7 joins XM-3, XM-4, XM-5, FM-5, and FM-6 in SiriusXM’s active satellite fleet. SXM-7 and SXM-8 together will replace XM-3 and XM-4, extending SiriusXM’s satellite delivered services through at least 2036.