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SSL satellite for Intelsat starts post-launch maneuvers

From http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/SSL_satellite_for_Intelsat_starts_post_launch_maneuvers_999.html

Space Systems Loral has announced that a high-power satellite designed and built for Intelsat was launched Friday and has successfully performed post-launch maneuvers according to plan.

The satellite, Intelsat 31, deployed its solar arrays on schedule following its launch aboard a Proton Breeze M vehicle provided by International Launch Services (ILS). It will begin firing its main thruster tomorrow in order to propel it toward its final geostationary orbit. The satellite will be used for broadcast services in Latin America.

“We continue to build on our unmatched track record of providing satellites for Intelsat and its industry leading customers,” said John Celli, president of SSL. “We look forward to Intelsat 31 coming into service and providing additional redundancy and reliability across the region.”

Intelsat 31 is an advanced 20-kilowatt class satellite that has both Ku- and C-band capabilities. The satellite is currently travelling to its final orbit at 95 degrees West longitude, where it will be co-located with Intelsat 30 and will provide augmented capacity and redundancy for unparalleled reliability.

The Ku-band payload, identified as DLA-2, will reinforce DIRECTV’s Direct-to-Home (DTH) television service in Latin America and provide increased distribution service reliability in the region. The C-band payload enhances Intelsat’s existing C-band service infrastructure serving Latin America.

“SSL has once again performed to our high expectations as they executed the Intelsat 31 manufacturing program,” said Thierry Guillemin, EVP and Chief Technology Officer of Intelsat.

“Intelsat 31 will further strengthen our strong video distribution neighborhoods in Latin America and provide increased resiliency for our long-standing customer, DIRECTV Latin America, reaching their goal to provide their subscribers with the most reliable and highest quality programming.”

Intelsat 31 is based on the powerful SSL 1300 platform, which has a long history of reliability and the flexibility to support innovation and evolving technologies. It marks the 104th satellite that SSL has delivered based on this highly successful platform.

The satellite is designed to provide service for 15 years or longer. With this launch, there are 81 SSL-built GEO satellites currently on orbit.

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