Telstar 14R Mission Success!

We have had a successful mission with the Proton M Breeze M rocket, carrying theTelstar 14R/Estrela do Sul 2 satellite built by Space Systems/ Loral. We have had confirmation that the satellite separated from the vehicle on schedule at 00:28 EDT, or 04:28 UTC, 9 hours and 13 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.


Telstar 14R/ Estrela do Sul 2 Third and Fourth Burn Completion

We have confirmed that the Breeze M Upper Stage has successfully completed its 3rd and 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 00:06 EDT, or 04:06 GMT and burn approximately 9 minutes. Separation of the Telstar 14R spacecraft is scheduled to follow the 5th burn completion by about 13 minutes.


Telstar 14R Stage Separations

We had a successful liftoff about 10 minutes ago of the ILS Proton M Breeze M rocket, which is carrying theTelstar 14R/ Estrela do Sul 2 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.


Victory Day in Baikonur during the Telstar 14R Launch Campaign!

Well, joint operations continue without incident.  The spacecraft is mounted to the Breeze M, encapsulation is complete, and the electrical teams are performing their joint checkouts.  But it is May 9, and this is one of the most memorialized days in Russian History.  It is Victory Day, the day that marks the end of World War II.  And just as Memorial Day is in America, this is a day of celebrating the veterans of the war, and in particular, the many who were lost.  And what an honor to be a part of this day with our Russian friends and colleagues. 


Didnt We Just Get Here [at the Telstar 14R Launch Mission Campaign]?

Didn’t we just get here?  But all of a sudden, we are deep into joint operations.  With the spacecraft (SC) move to Hall 101, all teams have begun the task of finalizing the ascent unit.   As scheduled, the SC was moved to Hall 101 and prepared for lifting onto the Breeze M.  After some electrical checkouts, all eyes were on the Khrunichev (KhSC) tilter unit, awaiting the ever exciting rotation to horizontal.  Watching thousands of pounds of flight hardware being rotated from an upright position, to a horizontal one is always a thrill.  And very few people get to witness this move, as Proton is the only launch vehicle in the world that assembles horizontally.  The coordinated schedule allows for both Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) and KhSC to perform electrical and mechanical closeouts of their respective hardware.  This includes removal of non-flight hardware, and final pre-encapsulation electrical checks.  This positioning of the orbital unit also allows for relatively easy installation of the payload fairing, which is our next important milestone.  


Telstar 14R / Estrela do Sul 2 Standalone Operations Come to a Close

The week of standalone operations has quickly drawn to a close. The propellant (prop) team has methodically and flawlessly completed the critical operation of fueling the spacecraft (SC). The three day operation, as has been the case on this campaign since our arrival, was completed ahead of schedule. Touch (knock) wood, as our Russian friends like to say. This milestone also signifies the preparations for joint operations. All SC electrical testing was completed, and final pre-launch closeouts and inspections are underway. The spacecraft was then lifted onto the transporter for the short journey from Hall 103A to Hall 101.  And in following a launch campaigns superstitious tradition, the prop load was followed by a gathering of all the propellant specialists from both teams for a post load celebration BBQ.


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