Early this morning, Arianespace orbited the Intelsat 904
communications satellite for international communications provider

20th launch for Intelsat, Arianespace’s first customer Kourou,
February 23 , 2002 – Intelsat 904 is the third satellite to be
launched in the Intelsat IX series, the new generation of satellite
deployed by this global communications provider , and was the 20th
Intelsat satellite to be launched by Ariane.

The collaboration between Arianespace and Intelsat reaches back to
1983. Sixty percent of the Intelsat satellites in operation today were
orbited by the European launcher, making it Arianespace’s largest
customer. The first series IX satellite, Intelsat 901, was launched by
Arianespace on June 9th, 2001 (Flight 141), followed by Intelsat 902
on August 30th 2001 (Flight 143).

Three more Intelsat IX satellites are scheduled for an Arianespace

Intelsat 904 is Arianespace’s second successful launch in 2002.

Upcoming launches

Ariane 5: Flight 145/Ariane 511 is scheduled for February 28. An
Ariane 5 will launch the European Space Agency’s Envisat Earth
observation satellite into a sun-synchronous quasi-polar orbit.

Following Flight 148, Arianespace’s backlog now stands at 40
satellites to be launched, plus 9 ATV missions for the International
Space Station.

Flight 148 at a glance

Flight 148 was carried out by an Ariane 44L, the version of the
launcher with four liquid-propellant strap-on boosters, from Europe’s
Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. Liftoff was on February 23, 2002
at 06H59 Universal Time (3:59 am local time in Kourou, 7:59 am in
Paris and 1:59 am in Washington, DC).

Provisional parameters at third stage injection were:

Perigee: 200.1 km for a target of 199.8 km (±3 km)

Apogee: 35,947 km for a target of 35,944 km (±150 km)

Inclination: 6.99 degrees for a target of 7.00 degrees (±0.06°)

The Intelsat 904 satellite

The Intelsat IX series is a key to Intelsat’s growth strategy. It
enables the communications provider to offer customers around the
world satellites which are two to three times more powerful than their
predecessors, delivering better quality service and also using very
competitively priced ground facilities.

Built by Space Systems/Loral in Palo Alto, California, the Intelsat
904 will be positioned at 60 degrees East. It will join Intelsat’s
fleet of satellites providing Internet connections, telephony,
television and enterprise network services for Europe, Africa, Central
Asia, the Far East and Australia. Weighing 4,680 kg. at liftoff, the
Intelsat 904 is fitted with 76 C-band transponders and 22 Ku-band
transponders (in 36 MHz unit equivalents). Design life in orbit is
over 13 years