The Swiss-based company Sea Launch has been selected to launch the Intelsat (News - Alert) 27 communications satellite into space early next year as part of a mutual multiple launch service agreement between the two companies.
Sea Launch's Zenit-3SL launch system will have the honor of lifting the seven-ton spacecraft into orbit, the heaviest load the launch system has ever seen. The Atlantic Ocean region will serve as host to the production. A sea-based launch system allows for lower costs and prime positioning when compared to a typical land launch.
The launch of Intelsat 27, which was originally scheduled for December 2012, is expected to provide an increased capacity of media, network and government services for Intelsat's customers in both the Americas as well as Europe. The IS-27 was ordered in 2009 as part of a four satellite package. The IS-27 has a hybrid C- and Ku-band design and will be augmented with a 20 x 25 kHz channel UHF payload.
“Following on to our recent announcement on the award of the Intelsat 21 launch, Sea Launch looks forward to working hard towards the successful launch of Intelsat 27 in early 2013,” said Kjell Karlsen, president of Sea Launch.
Theirry Guillemin, Intelsat's senior vice president and chief technical officer noted that “with six satellites scheduled for launch in the next year, a diversity of reliable solutions for Intelsat's access to space is essential.”
Intelsat signed an agreement with Boeing (News - Alert) Space and Intelligence Systems for the manufacturing of IS-27 in August 2010.
Edited by Jennifer Russell