Sea Launch Delivers Galaxy 16 Satellite to Orbit
The Sea Launch press release is reproduced below:
LONG BEACH, Calif., June 18, 2006 –Sea Launch Company today successfully delivered PanAmSat’s Galaxy 16 communications satellite to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO). Early data indicate the spacecraft is accurately positioned and in excellent condition.
A Zenit-3SL vehicle lifted off at 12:50 am PDT (07:50 GMT) from the Odyssey Launch Platform, positioned at 154 degrees West Longitude in the equatorial Pacific. All systems performed nominally throughout flight. The Block DM upper stage inserted the the 4,640 kg (10,229 lb) Loral 1300-series spacecraft, to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO), on its way to a final orbital position of 99 degrees West Longitude. A ground station at Hartebeesthoek, near Pretoria, South Africa, acquired the first signal from the satellite shortly after spacecraft separation.
Built by Space Systems/Loral, Galaxy 16 carries 24 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders, designed to meet the needs of a variety of broadcast customers in the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Mexico and Canada. Galaxy 16 replaces Galaxy 4R and is the newest member of PanAmSat’s North American Galaxy fleet. With this mission, Sea Launch has now successfully launched four satellites for PanAmSat, including Galaxy 16, Galaxy 13/Horizons-1 in 2003, Galaxy 3C in 2002 and PAS-9 in 2000. This is Sea Launch's sixth mission with a spacecraft built by Space Systems/Loral.
Following the completion of the mission, Rob Peckham, president and general manager of Sea Launch, congratulated PanAmSat and Space Systems/Loral. “We take pride in successfully delivering our fourth satellite to orbit for PanAmSat. And we look forward to delivering many more as we continue to grow our long-standing relationship,” Peckham said. “We’re delighted with today’s mission and we want to extend our thanks to everyone involved in achieving this milestone event. In particular, I want to thank our partners and contractors and the entire Sea Launch team for executing another outstanding Sea Launch mission.”
Through its owned and operated fleet of 24 satellites, PanAmSat (NYSE:PA) is a leading global provider of video, broadcasting and network distribution and delivery services. It transmits nearly 2,000 television channels worldwide and, as such, is the leading carrier of standard and high-definition signals. In total, the Company’s in-orbit fleet is capable of reaching over 98 percent of the world’s population through cable television systems, broadcast affiliates, direct-to-home operators, Internet services providers and telecommunications companies. In addition, PanAmSat supports the largest concentration of satellite-based business networks in the U.S., as well as specialized communications services in remote areas throughout the world. For more information, visit the Company’s website at www.panamsat.com.
About Space Systems/Loral
Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) is the leading designer, manufacturer and integrator of commercial satellites and satellite systems. Based in Palo Alto, Calif., the company has an international base of commercial and governmental customers whose applications include broadband digital communications, direct-to-home broadcast, mobile satellite services, defense communications, environmental monitoring and air traffic control. SS/L satellites have amassed over 1,200 years of reliable on-orbit service.
About Sea Launch Company
Sea Launch Company, LLC, headquartered in Long Beach, Calif., is the world’s most reliable heavy-lift commercial launch service. This international partnership offers the most direct and cost-effective route to geostationary orbit. With the advantage of a launch site on the Equator, the robust Zenit-3SL rocket can lift a heavier spacecraft mass or provide longer life on orbit, offering best value plus schedule assurance. Sea Launch is building a legacy, with one successful launch, one satisfied customer, at a time. For additional information and images of this successfully completed mission, please visit the Sea Launch website at: www.sea-launch.com
Source: Sea Launch Press Release