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SES-SS/L Satellite Exclusively for EchoStar

Satellite Technology

Satellite Technology Feature Article

February 17, 2009

SES-SS/L Satellite Exclusively for EchoStar

By Vivek Naik, TMCnet Contributor

Société Européenne des Satellites (SES) recently announced that it finalized its fourth deal with Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) for receipt and commissioning of an advanced technology satellite.

SS/L’s multi directional communicator is called QuetzSat-1 and will be in geo stationary orbit at seventy seven degrees west (77ºW) in 2011. It is scheduled for exclusive lease to EchoStar and will be primarily used for direct to home (DTH) services in the US via Dish Network, one of its ex-companies, and in Mexico by Dish Mexico.
 The satellite uses X, Y and Z axes sensors for messaging the controller to monitor its spin, orientation and location via innovative usage of electrical energy for propulsion. It has the function of an active repeater and is powered by lithium-ion technology, which is widely accepted for its economy of weight, size and cost. The below K band (KU) sat operates in frequencies from 12 to 18 GHz and is designed for a 15 year lifespan.
Advanced honey comb structured and multi layered materials drive the satellite’s casing and framework weight down, thus facilitating the use of additional value-add communications hardware. Part of its solution is to couple space originated DTH beams with earth equipment based beams to provide continuous quality coverage with additional broadband features.
SES (News - Alert) contributes its pioneering co-location innovation along with radio and HDTV, in MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 formats, transmissions. Co-location is a stacking of satellites in space in the same orbital position. An analogy is modular telecom cabinets, or even blade servers, where modules may be positioned at later dates thus providing an extensible platform.
SES’s software keeps a tight control on the juxtaposed satellites to avoid fatal – for the equipment and services – collisions. It drives information exchange, builds in redundancy and back-up, and allows the satellite stack to beam more channels with a 99.99 percent coverage guarantee. SES also provides technology where consumers can access HDTV via the Internet.
SES’s sat stack technology will come in handy considering the fact that EchoStar already has a sat functioning at 77ºW. The EchoStar, SS/L and SES combination have together, and in part, previously successfully set-up a similar configuration of three satellites at 110ºW.
“We are pleased to be a part of this collaboration between EchoStar and SES,” said John Celli, president and chief operating officer of Space Systems/Loral. “Our success and continued growth as a company is a result of satisfied customers that continue to look to us for their satellite procurements.”

Vivek Naik is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Vivek's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Jessica Kostek

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