AMC-23 Satellite Slated For December 6 Launch
The Americom-23 (AMC-23) satellite was delivered to Baikonur, Kazakhstan, on November 4 to be readied for its Proton/Breeze M launch scheduled for the morning of December 6, local time (evening of December 5 EST).
The Spacebus 4000 spacecraft was built by Alcatel Alenia Space and is being launched by International Launch Services (ILS) for service at the 172 degrees East longitude orbital position.
The spacecraft, along with an array of testing equipment and systems, was packed into nine crates weighing more than 85 metric tons and then loaded on a special purpose Antonov cargo plane. The flight left Nice, France on November 3, 2004 and arrived the following day.
The plane's cargo was unloaded and the combined satellite program teams from Americom and Alcatel immediately began a rigorous sequence of pre-launch preparations. These preparations include launch site testing, spacecraft fueling, integrating the satellite into the fairing, mating the fairing with the Proton/Breeze M, a final set of tests, and roll-out of the rocket to the launch pad.
AMC-23 is an advanced, high-powered hybrid C/Ku-band satellite, from which signals can be received and sent from California to Bangladesh, from as far north as Alaska in the U.S. and as far south as Australia and New Zealand, and all points in between.
This spacecraft will serve local, transcontinental and transoceanic customers across the Pacific region, including Western North America, East Asia, the South Pacific, Alaska and Hawaii, and provide links to the world's premier regional satellite systems.
The design of AMC-23 combines a conventional C-band landmass coverage payload with an innovative Ku-band oceanic coverage payload. The satellite's Ku-band payload, comprised of 20 high-powered transponders with varied bandwidths from 27 to 36 MHz, has been tailored to the long-haul airline routes over the Pacific Ocean to ensure consistent and constant broadband connectivity requirements of our customer, Connexion by Boeing.
In comparison, the 18 transponder C-band payload will be used by broadcasters, cable programmers, Internet service providers, government agencies, educational institutions, carriers and private networks for next generation distribution solutions within, and connectivity to, North America and Pacific Rim.
"We compliment the Alcatel Alenia Space team for delivering this very sophisticated satellite, which we designed to address a spectrum of customer applications for the next decade and beyond," said Ed Horowitz, President and CEO of SES Americom.
He continued, "We have entrusted this important spacecraft to ILS for an on-time and on-target launch in early December; we have customers on both sides of the Pacific waiting to use both payloads in early 2006."
Alcatel Alenia Space
International Launch Services
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