Unpacking and Spacecraft Container Opening

22 November 2016
After the long journey from Northern California to Baikonur, it is now time to unpack and open the spacecraft container so that the spacecraft can be set into place and processed. Although a bit complicated, it is an easy task for our team of highly qualified professionals. Ever so slightly, the container lid is lifted and there she is, waiting for the team to wake her from her long journey so that she can be prepared for her next, even longer flight for her proud owners—EchoStar. While this takes place, the rest of the team is unpacking and setting up offices and settling in to our new home for the next few weeks…

READ MORE

EchoStar XXI Offload

21 November 2016
As our bus pulled up to the airport, in the distance we all could see the Antonov coming in for a smooth landing. Watching the world’s largest cargo aircraft is always an amazing sight to see—huge but graceful! This offload was not only well organized and smooth, but also slightly faster than usual. The use of a new, more modern ramp system allowed for the air cargo team to assemble the ramp quicker, which is always nice when the team is outside in minus 12 °C weather! First the air/sea containers were offloaded and then the main reason we all came here for: the SSL spacecraft made its way down the new ramp and onto the rail car for the slow but steady journey to the processing facility where it will be unpacked, checked, powered up and fueled for the next stop—space!

READ MORE

EchoStar XXI Launch Team Arrival

19 November 2016
Well, the EchoStar XXI launch campaign has officially begun! This trip was a little faster to site as our flight was an Airbus A319 which not only provided more comfort for the team, but we arrived a few minutes earlier. The utilization of this aircraft was in part due to the changes and improvements to the local airport runway that can now handle this type of aircraft. The team arrived onsite, checked-in to our hotels and then off to the Arrival Briefing on safety and security at our new home away from home. From there, a delicious dinner was served and then off to bed as tomorrow begins what we all came for—to launch EchoStar XXI!

READ MORE

Rollout!

Spectacular sunrise, warm temperatures, slight breeze provided an outstanding start to the day as members of our team along with a multitude of Russian colleagues spanning multiple organizations (it takes a village to launch a rocket) watched in animated anticipation, awe and with a great deal of pride as the Intelsat 31 SC cocooned in the mighty Proton Rocket rolled out from the Breeze-M fueling station at 0630 today bound for Launch Pad 24.

READ MORE

Breeze M Fueling Day 1

The mission team’s hard-work is paying off!  This morning at 0830 the ILV majestically rolled out of H111 to the Breeze-M fueling station for two days of fueling. 

READ MORE

Hive of Activity

The last three days have been a beehive of activity in Hall 101 as teams have come and gone to perform a multitude of operations to ensure that the SC and Breeze-M are healthy, verified and ready for upcoming operations.  We now have the Ascent Unit being prepared for transfer to H111 where it will be integrated with the rest of the launch vehicle (rocket).  In addition, the teams are also well under way in preparing for joint operations at the launch pad.

READ MORE

Joint Operations Underway

There you have it….as Friday 27 May draws to a close, so does Day 1 of Joint Operations for the Intelsat 31 launch campaign.  Preparation for Day 1 of Joint Operations started the night before as the SSL mechanical team prepared and transferred the Intelsat 31 SC into H101 along with the necessary equipment to perform our operations seamlessly.

READ MORE

Intelsat 31 SC Fully Fueled

…Intelsat 31 SC fully fueled!  Friday 13 May was lucky for our team and was a great way to close out the “standard work week”   Well done to the SSL Propulsion team and ground support crew!  Decontamination operations will take place over the rest of the weekend.

READ MORE

NTO Load Completed

Phase one of fueling is complete  Stellar performance by the SSL Propulsion team along with minimal ground support crew as we have successfully loaded the Intelsat 31 with NTO.   

READ MORE

Contact Us!

For the latest news and information, or if you have a question, please email ILS at contactus@ilslaunch.com