Loral, Mitsubishi Complete Testing
The Optus C1 communications satellite, built by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) for SingTel Optus and the Australian Department of Defence under a contract with Mitsubishi Electric, has successfully completed a complex series of in-orbit tests. The satellite, launched June 11 from the Spaceport at Kourou, French Guiana, was handed over to Optus and the Australian Department of Defence for operational service on July 18. Optus C1 achieved geostationary orbit on June 20. In-orbit tests, conducted by a combined team of Loral and Mitsubishi engineers, demonstrated performance that accurately reflects the results of ground tests before launch. Optus C1 carries a total of 16 antennas that provide 18 beams across Australia, New Zealand, and the Asia-Pacific region, as well as global beams covering a large area from Malaysia to Hawaii. The advanced communications payload operates in four different frequency bands — commercial services at Ku-band, and military communications at UHF, X- and Ka-bands. The spacecraft is operating from an orbital slot at 156 degrees East longitude.