Welcome to the EchoStar XIV Blog

Welcome to the second ILS Proton launch campaign for 2010 – the launch of the Space Systems/Loral-built, EchoStar XIV satellite for EchoStar and Dish Network. Follow along with the mission team as they prepare for the launch.

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Start of the EchoStar XIV Campaign

The EchoStar XIV launch campaign is off to a good start. The 54" of snow in Washington, DC could not stop the team from arriving in Baikonur on schedule. Several participants from both ILS and SS/L have been here many times, but for some it is a new experience. The first order of business is for all team members to attend a safety briefing, which is presented by Khrunichev, SOS International and ILS. Each group has a different focus on safety, but all parties involved have the same goal: to keep all team members safe and healthy.

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EchoStar XIV Mission Success!

We have had a successful mission with the Proton M Breeze M rocket, carrying the EchoStar XIV satellite built by Space Systems/Loral. We have had confirmation that the satellite separated from the vehicle on schedule at 23:37 p.m. EST, or 03:37 GMT, 9 hours and 10 minutes after liftoff.

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EchoStar XIV Mission Success!

We have had a successful mission with the Proton M Breeze M rocket, carrying the EchoStar XIV satellite built by Space Systems/Loral. We have had confirmation that the satellite separated from the vehicle on schedule at 23:37 p.m. EST, or 03:37 GMT, 9 hours and 10 minutes after liftoff. Everything occurred as planned with ignition, shutdown and separation of the Proton’s first three stages. Then the Breeze M upper stage with the satellite continued the mission, igniting five times, and then releasing the satellite into transfer orbit.

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EchoStar XIV Third and Fourth Burn Completion

We have confirmed that the Breeze M upper stage has successfully completed its 3rd & 4th burns, as well as jettisoning its additional propellant tank. The vehicle is now in a 5-hour coast period, during which we will have nothing to report. The 5th burn is scheduled to start around 11:20 p.m. EST, or 03:20 GMT. Separation of the EchoStar XIV spacecraft is scheduled to follow the 5th burn completion by about 12 minutes.

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EchoStar XIV Second Burn Completion

As the Breeze M upper stage of our Proton M rocket continues its climb into space with the EchoStar XIV satellite, we have received confirmation that the 2nd burn of the upper stage occurred and shut down as scheduled. The next events are scheduled for about 2 hours from now. The Breeze M upper stage will ignite for a 3rd time and burn for approximately 10 minutes; after that the additional propellant tank will be jettisoned, and the 4th burn will start and complete. All this will happen in a span of almost 20 minutes while the vehicle is again out of range of a ground station. We should reacquire the vehicle shortly after the 4th burn ends.

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EchoStar XIV Stage Separations

We had a successful liftoff about 10 minutes ago of our Proton M Breeze M rocket, which is carrying the EchoStar XIV satellite. The three stages of the Proton vehicle have performed as planned, and it is up to the Breeze M upper stage to complete the mission. The upper stage has begun its first burn, which is scheduled to last around 4 minutes.

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PLF Signing and PLF Encapsulation

This has been a very busy week for all of us. One of the more “technical” operations that we perform during the campaign is the signing of the payload fairing by the entire launch team. Each of the team members takes a turn climbing up the ladder, putting their personal touches on the fairing logos and then climbing back down the ladder to safety. The biggest decisions are what to write and whom to dedicate the launch to: parents, children and loved ones are named. It’s a great photo opportunity for the team and the last thing we do prior to mating the AU to the launch vehicle. It’s now time for the SS/L team to say good bye to the satellite and hand it over to the capable hands of our partners from Khrunichev.

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Contact Us!

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