Intelsat 34 Arrives in Kourou for August Launch

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WASHINGTON — The Intelsat 34 satellite arrived July 20 at Europe’s Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana, where it will be made ready for an Aug. 20 launch aboard an Arianespace Ariane 5 rocket, according to a Space Systems/Loral press release.

Intelsat 34 will replace two older satellites, Intelsat 805 and Galaxy 11, and provide coverage over Latin America and the North Atlantic from its station at 304.5 degrees East.

“It is a critically important satellite for our customers, hosting a [direct-to-home] platform and sending video programming for blue chips like Fox and HBO across Latin America.” Mohinder Guru, senior manager of the Intelsat Spacecraft Program Office, said in a post on the company’s website. “It also includes a very important mobility payload, allowing passengers and vessels in the North Atlantic to get broadband whenever they want it.”

Intelsat 34 is the 50th satellite Palo Alto, California-based Space Systems/Loral has built for Luxembourg- and McLean,Va-based Intelsat.

“SSL has been an important manufacturing partner of Intelsat for more than 35 years and has designed and delivered nearly half of the satellites in the Intelsat fleet,” Thierry Guillemin, Intelsat’s executive vice president, said.

Intelsat had said in an April 2013 statement that Intelsat 34 will serve as a replacement for Intelsat 27, a satellite that was lost the Feb. 1, 2013 failure of a Sea Launch-operated Zenit-3SL rocket.