ILS Proton launches Hispasat satellite

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PARIS — International Launch Services last night conducted the second of three commercial Proton launches planned for this year, completing a nine hour and 12-minute mission carrying Hispasat’s Amazonas-5 satellite.

Proton lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 3:23 p.m. Eastern, using its first three stages to reach a suborbital trajectory, followed by five burns of the Breeze M upper stage to reach geostationary transfer orbit.

The launch is Proton’s third overall this year, preceded by an ILS launch of EchoStar-21 in June and a Russian government launch of the Blagovest-11L satellite in August.

Built by Space Systems Loral in California, Amazonas-5 has 24 Ku-band transponders and a high-throughput payload of 34 Ka-band spot beams. Spain-based Hispasat ordered the satellite in 2014 after a power problem on the Orbital ATK-built Amazonas-4A reduced its capacity.

The problem prompted Hispasat to cancel its order for an Amazonas-4B satellite and turn to SSL to build Amazonas-5 as a single-satellite solution.

Amazonas-5 will be stationed at 61 degrees west for television and internet services across South and Central America.

ILS’s final mission for the year is scheduled for Sept. 28 with AsiaSat-9 for Hong Kong-based fleet operator AsiaSat.