Intelsat 11 and Optus D2 Successfully Launched
[10-08-07 – Satellite Today] Arianespace has confirmed the successful launch of the Intelsat 11 and Optus D2 satellites. The launch took place late on Oct. 5 from Kourou, French Guiana. Both satellites were built by Orbital Sciences. For Arianespace, the launch was the latest to take place in what has been a successful year for the launch services provider. It has two further Ariane 5 launches planned before the end of the year.
For Optus, the launch of the D2 satellite was a significant milestone as it looks to boost its position in the Australian communications market. The D2 satellite will replace the Optus B3 satellite, which has been in operation since 1994. The new generation D-series satellites offer increased satellite performance and provide continuity of service for Optus satellite customers as Optus B-series satellites near end of life. Optus Satellite will continue to bring rural and regional Australia enhanced capacity for two-way communications services (VSAT) and extended reach for direct-to-home television services. The third Optus D-Series satellite is scheduled to be launched in 2009.
For Intelsat, the launch of the Intelsat 11 satellite will help in serving its broadcast customers in Latin America, in particular. The satellite will operate from 317° E and host some of Latin America’s main video programmers and the region’s largest DTH platform. Its payload is comprised of 25 C- and 18 Ku-band transponder units offering robust coverage for broadcasting content in the Americas and Europe.