Hylas-1 Satellite Safely Reaches Operating Orbit

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PARIS — The Hylas-1 broadband telecommunications satellite launched Nov. 26 has reached its final geostationary operating position and is in good health, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) announced Nov. 30.

The satellite was built by a joint venture between ISRO’s Antrix commercial arm and Astrium Satellites of Europe, with the Indian side providing the satellite bus and Astrium handling the electronics payload. The payload includes a new subsystem, built with European Space Agency funding, to permit Hylas-1 owner Avanti Communications of London to adjust power and broadcast frequencies among different regions in response to demand for broadband service.

Hylas-1 can provide 3 kilowatts of power to its two Ku-band channels and eight Ka-band channels. It will be operated at 33.5 degrees east. ISRO, which is handling the satellite’s early orbit operations, said Hylas-1’s orbit has been nearly circularized to geostationary position about 36,000 kilometers over the equator following three sequences during which its liquid-fueled apogee motor was fired.

The satellite is in continuous radio contact with ISRO’s Hassan master satellite control facility in southwest India, and has deployed one of its communications antennas, ISRO said.

Avanti has contracted with Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., to build a larger Hylas-2 satellite to be ready for launch in 2012. Hylas-2, using the Orbital Star 2.7 platform, will provide 5 kilowatts of power to a payload of 24 Ka-band user beams and four gateway beams. Like Hylas-1, Hylas-2 will be launched by Europe’s Arianespace consortium of Evry, France.