Space Systems/Loral Ships AsiaSat 7 Craft to Baikonur

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Satellite manufacturer Space Systems/Loral has shipped the AsiaSat 7 telecommunications satellite to the BaikonurCosmodrome in Kazakhstan in preparation for a scheduled Nov. 26 launch aboard a Russian-built Proton rocket, Hong Kong-based Asia Satellite Telecommunications Co. Ltd. (AsiaSat) said in an Oct. 24 press release.

AsiaSat 7, a Loral 1300 model satellite platform, carries 28 C-band and 17 Ku-band transponders as well as a Ka-band payload, AsiaSat said. The spacecraft will provide television, telephone and VSAT or very small aperture terminal services in the Asia-Pacific region, eventually replacing the AsiaSat 3S satellite at the 105.5 degrees east longitude orbital slot, AsiaSat said. AsiaSat 3S is expected to reach the end of its life in 2014.

Space Systems/Loral of Palo Alto, Calif., built and delivered AsiaSat 7 one month ahead of schedule, AsiaSat said. “Space Systems/Loral’s exemplary performance means that we will have additional capacity on-orbit well ahead of the planned date for the AsiaSat 3S replacement,” William Wade, AsiaSat’s president and chief executive officer, said in a prepared statement.

The launch of AsiaSat 7 will be provided by Reston, Va.-based International Launch Services, which markets the Proton rocket to commercial customers.