AsiaSat, a major satellite operator based in Hong Kong, announced that it is ready to transport its latest geostationary satellite, AsiaSat 9, to the launch site at Baikonur, Kazakhstan.
Slated to launch in late 2017 from an ILS Proton Breeze M manufactured by the Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center, the satellite will be placed at 122 degrees East and will replace AsiaSat 4, which has been operational since 2003.
Built by US-based company Space Systems Loral (SSL), AsiaSat 9 is equipped with 28 C-band and 32 Ku-band transponders, and a Ka-band payload, and has an estimated lifetime of 15 years. According the the company, the satellite will provide enhanced C-band coverage over Asia, Australasia and the Pacific region, as well as customised Ku-band beams for Australasia, East Asia, Indonesia, Myanmar and Mongolia.
On 7 April 2017, AsiaSat and SSL conducted a Satellite Pre-Ship Review (SPSR) meeting, where they critically reviewed the satellite’s performance data and the readiness of each individual subsystem. Both companies agreed that AsiaSat 9 is ready for launch.
“We are pleased to achieve this key milestone with our largest-ever satellite ready to be shipped to the Baikonur launch site,” said Andrew Jordan, President and Chief Executive Officer of AsiaSat. “AsiaSat 9’s additional capacity and high performance coverage will provide the path for our continued growth and ever better service to our customers.”
Currently AsiaSat operates six satellites, serving broadcast and telecommunications industries that reach two-thirds of the world’s population.