Amazonas 1 Repositioned To Inaugurate New Slot

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PARIS — Commercial satellite fleet operator Hispasat will be moving its aging Amazonas 1 telecommunications satellite, whose remaining service life is unclear, to inaugurate a new orbital slot at 36 degrees west now that the Amazonas 3 is operating at Hispasat’s core slot over the Americas at 61 degrees west.

Madrid-based Hispasat declined to disclose the estimated life remaining in Amazonas 1, which was launched in 2004 but has a fuel issue that cut its estimated service duration to around 10 years.

In response to SpaceNews inquiries, Hispasat said it would be placing another satellite at 36 degrees west to assure long-term service for the company’s planned customers from that slot. Hispasat declined to disclose the target market but announced the orbital maneuver at the National Association of Broadcasters meeting in Las Vegas the week of April 8, which may give an indication of what customers it hopes to attract.

Amazonas 1 has 36 Ku- and 27 C-band transponders.

Much of Hispasat’s recent revenue growth has come from its 61 degrees west operation and its appeal to the fast-growing Latin American market for satellite bandwidth.