International Launch Services (ILS) successfully placed the EUTELSAT 9B satellite into geosynchronous transfer orbit today, for Eutelsat Communications of Paris, France. With this mission, ILS, a leader in providing mission integration and launch services to the global commercial satellite industry, completed its 92nd Proton launch overall and 1st Proton launch of 2016. Since its maiden flight in 1965, this was the 410th aggregate launch for the Proton vehicle, including both Federal and commercial missions.
The launch of EUTELSAT 9B, built by Airbus Defence and Space, was conducted for Eutelsat using the Proton Breeze M launch vehicle, manufactured by Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center (Khrunichev), the majority owner of ILS and one of the cornerstones of the global space industry.
The Proton Breeze M vehicle carrying EUTELSAT 9B launched from Pad 39 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, today, at 04:20: local time (22:20 GMT and 17:20 ET on January 29). The first three stages of the Proton used a standard ascent profile to place the orbital unit (Breeze M upper stage and the EUTELSAT 9B satellite) into a sub-orbital trajectory. The Breeze M performed planned mission maneuvers to advance the orbital unit first to a circular parking orbit, then to an intermediate orbit, followed by a transfer orbit, and finally to a geosynchronous transfer orbit. Separation of the EUTELSAT 9B satellite occurred 9 hours, 12 minutes after liftoff.
EUTELSAT 9B is a high-capacity 56-transponder Ku-band satellite for Eutelsat’s 9° East position. Capacity will be spread across five footprints, with frequency reuse optimizing overall bandwidth. EUTELSAT 9B will address high-growth digital TV markets through one pan-European footprint delivering wide coverage and four regional footprints. EUTELSAT 9B also hosts the first data relay payload for the European Data Relay System (EDRS) being implemented through a Public Private Partnership (PPP) between ESA and Airbus Defence and Space.
ILS President Kirk Pysher stated, “The EUTELSAT 9B launch truly represents an example of an international partnership: a European-made satellite for Eutelsat with an ESA / Airbus Defence and Space payload launched on a Russian rocket by an American company. The entire EUTELSAT 9B team of Eutelsat, ILS, Khrunichev and Airbus Defence and Space worked very hard to ensure mission success. We want to express our sincere thanks to Eutelsat for their confidence and trust and look forward to launching future satellites in the Multi-Launch Agreement, designed to provide Eutelsat additional schedule flexibility, and assured access to space at cost effective prices.”
“Our congratulations to ILS and Krunichev for today’s flawless launch that sees a new Eutelsat satellite propelled on its way to geostationary orbit. This sophisticated satellite program reflects outstanding collaboration between Eutelsat, ESA, Airbus Defence and Space, ILS and Khrunichev. We look forward to putting EUTELSAT 9B to work for the benefit of our broadcaster clients and to the inauguration of the ground-breaking European Data Relay System that illustrates the complementarity of geostationary and low earth satellites for fast transmission of data flows back to earth,” said Michel de Rosen, Eutelsat Chairman and CEO.
About ILS and Khrunichev
ILS provides launch services for global satellite operators and offers a complete array of services and support, from contract signing through mission management and on-orbit delivery. ILS markets the Proton and Angara vehicles to commercial satellite operators worldwide and is a U.S. company headquartered in Reston, VA., near Washington, D.C.
To date, ILS has launched 9(2) commercial missions. For more information, visit www.ilslaunch.com.
Khrunichev, which holds the majority interest in ILS, is one of the cornerstones of the Russian space industry. Khrunichev manufactures the Proton system and the Angara family of vehicles. The Proton vehicle launches from facilities at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and has a heritage of more than 400 missions since 1965. Khrunichev includes, among its branches, a number of key manufacturers of launch vehicle and spacecraft components in Moscow and in other cities of the Russian Federation. For more information, visit www.khrunichev.com.
About Eutelsat Communications
Established in 1977, Eutelsat Communications (Euronext Paris: ETL, ISIN code: FR0010221234) is one of the world’s leading and most experienced operators of communications satellites. The company provides capacity on 39 satellites to clients that include broadcasters and broadcasting associations, pay-TV operators, video, data and Internet service providers, enterprises and government agencies.
Eutelsat’s satellites provide ubiquitous coverage of Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific and the Americas, enabling video, data, broadband and government communications to be established irrespective of a user’s location.
Headquartered in Paris, with offices and teleports around the globe, Eutelsat represents a workforce of 1,000 men and women from 37 countries who are experts in their fields and work with clients to deliver the highest quality of service. For more about Eutelsat please visit www.eutelsat.com