Eutelsat 3D Begins Service Following Customer Transfer

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Eutelsat declared its Eutelsat 3D satellite, launched May 15 aboard an International Launch Services Proton rocket, fully operational at the 3 degrees east orbital slot June 19 following the overnight transfer of all customers from the Eutelsat 3C satellite.

In a press release, the Paris-based operator said Eutelsat 3D, with 32 Ku-band transponders and one Ka-band transponder, will boost the company’s capacity at 3 degrees east, which serves video and broadband markets in Europe and Africa. Eutelsat 3C will be moved in July to the 13 degrees east slot and renamed Hot Bird 13D, joining the Hot Bird 3C and 3B satellites at that location.

The Hot Bird 13A satellite, meanwhile, will be relocated to 7/8 degrees west, where it will be renamed Eutelsat 8 West C and increase the company’s coverage of Africa and the Middle East, Eutelsat said.

Eutelsat 3D will remain at the 3 degrees east slot until Eutelsat 3B is launched to that position in the second quarter of 2014 aboard a Sea Launch rocket, the company said. 

The press release did not say where Eutelsat 3D will wind up.

Eutelsat said the moves will bring higher in-orbit security and increased capacity to its fleet.