[Satellite TODAY 08-02-12] Orbital Sciences has entered final preparations for the launch of the Hylas 2 communications satellite for Avanti Communications aboard an Arianespace Ariane 5 rocket from the European Spaceport in French Guiana, the manufacturer announced Aug. 1.
Hylas 2 will launch Aug. 2 during an almost one-hour-long launch window that opens at 4:54 p.m. and closes at 5:51 p.m. (EDT), subject to final pre-launch preparations and testing activities, as well as acceptable weather conditions at the time of the launch.
The satellite will be placed into commercial service from its final geosynchronous orbit position following the launch and several weeks of in-orbit testing and systems verification. Hylas 2 aims to provide data and video services to Eastern and Southern Africa, Eastern Europe and the Middle East, and across the Caucuses.
“Hylas 2 introduces a new market application for Orbital’s commercial communications satellites, bringing broadband communications into the range of space systems we offer our customers,” Orbital Sciences Senior Vice President of Communications Satellites Christopher Richmond said in a statement. “The Hylas 2 spacecraft is one of the most sophisticated commercial satellites we have ever built and we are looking forward to putting it to work for our Avanti customer.”