Displaying items by tag: French Guiana

Arianespace launches telecom satellites into orbit

Written on Sunday, 16 August 2020 07:33

A rocket that blasted off from French Guiana successfully placed two communications satellites into orbit Saturday, launch firm Arianespace said.

The Ariane 5 rocket took off at 2204 GMT from Kourou, the European Space Agency's space center in the South American territory, the company said in a statement.

Two satellites on board, belonging to the intergovernmental provider Intelsat and Japan's Broadcasting Satellite System Corporation, were later successfully placed into orbit, Arianespace said.  

The satellite will be used for direct-to-home services and will serve as a backup to another ultra-high definition satellite launched in 2017, called BSAT-4a.

A servicing vehicle that will dock with other satellites in orbit was also deployed, it added.

The launch, the first for Arianespace since activities at Kourou were halted in March due to the coronavirus, had originally been scheduled for July 28 but was delayed to allow for more "technical inspections".

Another delay followed due to "the unexpected behavior of one sensor" for a liquid hydrogen tank.

The launch was delayed for a third time due to unfavorable wind conditions.

Arianespace also launched the Galaxy 30 satellite for Intelsat as part of a larger bid to replace the aging North American Galaxy set of satellites for broadcast services.

Galaxy 30 and other satellites of its group will provide services such as ultra-high definition broadcasts, over-the-top service to allow consumers to directly stream from the satellite, and a range of other services for broadband, mobile and enterprise.

Published in Satellite Industry

Two of Europe’s leading satellite firms, France-based Eutelsat and Luxembourg-based SES, announced they are in a high state of readiness for imminent launches.

Eutelsat’s 172B satellite is in the final stages of preparation, according to the company, at the Airbus Defense and Space facility in Toulouse. The satellite will be boarded onto a special flight to French Guiana on March 20. Weighing 3.5 tons, it is the first European-built high-power all-electric satellite, scheduled for an Arian launch on April 25 from the European Spaceport.

The purpose of Eutelsat’s 172B satellite is to deliver increased capacity for fast-growing applications that include video distribution. The satellite will be located at 172° East, which will provide key coverage for Asia Pacific over land and sea, from Alaska to Australia.

The new satellite will replace the previous 172A satellite to provide service continuity and improved performance via C and Ku-band payloads connected to a range of footprints. It will feature an additional new Ku-band multi-beam payload delivering 1.8Gbps of throughput to serve the world’s fastest-growing region (Asia Pacific) with in-flight entertainment and connectivity services.

Meanwhile, the SES-15 satellite has reportedly arrived at the European Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana, in preparation for its launch by a Soyuz vehicle in April this year. The new satellite was designed and manufactured by Boeing. It will carry a hybrid payload, with additional Ku-band wide beams and Ku- as well as Ka-band high throughput satellite (HTS) capacity.

SES’s new satellite will feature an electric propulsion system for orbit-raising and in-orbit maneuvers. It is the company’s first hybrid satellite to be launched and will be equipped with 16 Ku-band transponders (36MHz equivalent) and also a 10GHz high throughput payload. The all-electric satellite in contrast to Eutelsat will cover the new orbital position of 129° West and will serve North America, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.

Published in Satellite Industry