International Launch Services (ILS), which provides mission and launch services to the commercial satellite industry, has carried the AsiaSat 5 satellite into orbit on its ILS Proton on behalf of Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Limited (AsiaSat) of Hong Kong. This was the fourth commercial mission of the year for ILS and the sixth successful Proton launch of 2009. From contract signing to launch, the full integration of the AsiaSat 5 mission was completed in less than six months.
The ILS Proton Breeze M launched from Pad 39 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome on August 12. After a 9 hour 15 minute mission, the Breeze M successfully released the AsiaSat 5 satellite, weighing over 3.7 metric tons, into geo-transfer orbit; this was the 347th launch for the Proton. The Proton Breeze M vehicle is developed and built by Moscow’s Khrunichev Research and Production Space Centre.
Built to the Space Systems/Loral 1300 platform, AsiaSat 5 will replace AsiaSat 2 at the orbital location of 100.5ºE. This new satellite, with an enhanced pan-Asian C-band footprint and high-power Ku-band beams over East Asia and South Asia, as well as an in-orbit steerable Ku beam, will provide advanced satellite services including television broadcast, telephone networks and VSAT networks for broadband multimedia services across Asia-Pacific. The satellite is designed for a lifespan of 15 years but the station-keeping lifetime of the satellite may be even longer as a result of the performance of the ILS Proton launch vehicle.
* ILS offers a complete array of services and support, from contract signing through mission management and on-orbit delivery. It has exclusive rights to market the Proton vehicle and is a US company headquartered near Washington, D.C.
** Khrunichev, which holds the majority interest in ILS, manufactures the Proton system and is developing the Angara launch system. The Proton launches from facilities at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and has a heritage of over 340 missions since 1965. Khrunichev includes among its branches a number of key manufacturers of launch vehicle and spacecraft components in Moscow and in other cities of the Russian Federation.
*** AsiaSat, serves over two-thirds of the world's population with its three satellites, AsiaSat 2 at 100.5ºE, AsiaSat 3S at 105.5ºE and AsiaSat 4 at 122ºE. The AsiaSat satellite system provides services to both the broadcast and telecommunications industries. Over 300 television and radio channels are now delivered by the company's satellites, reaching over 96 million households, with more than 360 million viewers across the Asia Pacific region. AsiaSat is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Asia Satellite Telecommunications Holdings.