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Thread: Atlantic Bird 7 launched at sea

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    Atlantic Bird 7 launched at sea

    Atlantic Bird 7 launched at sea
    08.00 Europe/London, September 25, 2011 By Julian Clover

    Eutelsat Communications’ Atlantic Bird 7 has been successfully sent into orbit from the ocean-based Odyssey Launch Platform in international waters of the Pacific Ocean.

    The new satellite was delivered into orbit by a Zenit-3SL rocket operated by Sea Launch on Saturday September 24 at 20:18 GMT (22:18 CET). After a 1-hour 7-minute flight, the Zenit-3SL booster released Atlantic Bird into geosynchronous transfer orbit. Partial deployment of the solar array, commanded by Eutelsat from its teleport in Rambouillet, was successfully completed within three hours of separation.

    Atlantic Bird 7 is designed to enhance Eutelsat’s capability at 7 degrees West, which has emerged as a key video neighbourhood delivering Arab and international channels into almost 30 million satellite homes across North Africa and the Middle East. Eutelsat operates at 7 degrees West in close collaboration with the Egyptian satellite operator Nilesat, which manages its own system of three satellites at this location.

    Commenting on the launch, Eutelsat CEO, Michel de Rosen said: “.This new satellite will deliver headroom for expansion at one of Eutelsat’s fastest growing video neighbourhoods, serving vibrant TV markets in North Africa and the Middle East. It underscores our ambition to make a long-term commitment to digital broadcasting markets in the region and to team with key players to deliver first-class service.

    A full series of in orbit tests will now take place before the satellite is moved to 7 degrees West in the second half of October. The 50 transponder payload is 11 more than on the satellite that is being replaced, Atlantic Bird 4A.

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    Re: Atlantic Bird 7 launched at sea

    Sea Launch success for Eutelsat Atlantic Bird 7

    Rebecca Hawkes ©RapidTVNews | 25-09-2011

    Eutelsat’s latest broadcast satellite for the Arab world has been successfully launched from the Pacific Ocean Odyssey pad operated by Sea Launch, the Russian owned company which emerged from bankruptcy protection last year.

    The new satellite – Atlantic Bird 7 - will be positioned in orbit at 7 degrees West. Once operational next month, it will provide up to 44 Ku-band transponders for both high definition (HD) and standard definition direct to home (DTH) satellite services in the Middle East and North Africa. Additionally, 12 Ku-band transponders will enable consumer broadcasting and high speed internet services across North West Africa, across the Maghreb and down to the Gulf of Guinea.

    Once operational, Atlantic Bird 7 will carry popular free to air channels such as Al Jazeera and MBC’s Al Arabiya.

    The launch, on Saturday at 08.18GMT, marked the return to service of Sea Launch, from its converted oil rig platform off the Californian coast. The company experienced a serious rocket failure in 2007 and was forced to restructure its finances.

    “We offer our sincere congratulations to Eutelsat, and to Astrium for this outstanding success,” said Kjell Karlsen, president, Sea Launch AG. “We’re very proud to play a role in Eutelsat’s continued and expanding success. We thank you for your renewed trust and confidence in our system and our team.

    Michel de Rosen, chief executive Eutelsat, added: “The powerful Atlantic Bird 7 satellite will further consolidate Eutelsat’s resources for vibrant digital broadcasting markets across the Middle East and North Africa. Our thanks go to Sea Launch AG, Energia Logistics and RSC Energia for this precisely-executed launch and their extreme professionalism during this important campaign.”

    The satellite, based on the Astrium Eurostar E3000 platform is expected to have a service lifetime of over 15 years.

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