Abu Dhabi, May 13, 2012 – Al Yah Satellite Communications (Yahsat) welcomed over 300 guests at the Park Hyatt in Abu Dhabi to honor the successful ILS Proton launch of the Y1B satellite on April 24, and the initial deployment of the company’s in-orbit development program. The celebratory event included key officials from the UAE Government and Armed Forces, as well as Yahsat partners ILS, Thales Alenia Space and Astrium Services. The program opened with a cultural song and dance, followed by a welcome speech by Waleed Al Mokarrab Al Muhairi, the CEO of Mubadala, the strategic investment arm of Yahsat. The evening also included a special video created by Yahsat, a presentation of commemorative awards with all partners, the unveiling of Yahsat’s new TV commercial, and a special dedication including poems written and presented by Yahsat staff.
The Y1B satellite, which weighs over 6 metric tons and was built on the Eurostar E3000 platform, will deliver communications in Ka-band to serve both commercial and government users. Y1B was precisely placed into geostationary orbit by the ILS Proton vehicle after a 9 hour 12 minute 5-burn mission from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The satellite will provide commercial broadband links through Yahsat’s YahClick service. Military Ka-band, for the UAE Armed Forces, will be offered through a service called YahSecure. The launch completed Yahsat’s current in-orbit deployment program and complements the Y1A satellite which carries a mixed Ku- C- and Ka-band payload. The multipurpose satellite system will provide coverage that will encompass 28 countries.
Frank McKenna said, “The government of Abu Dhabi made a sound, strategic investment in Yahsat, the first to provide this highly advanced technology to the region. It is an extraordinary achievement to put the structure of this program in place after just two and a half years. ILS is very proud to be a part of the of the collaboration and pleased with the incredible teamwork of ILS, Khrunichev, Yahsat, Thales and Astrium leading up to the successful launch of ILS Proton.”