Nimiq 5 successfully launched from Baikonur Cosmodrome

International Launch Services (ILS) successfully carried the Nimiq 5 satellite into orbit on an ILS Proton for Telesat, the fourth largest fixed satellite services operator worldwide. This was the fifth commercial mission of the year for ILS and the seventh successful Proton launch of 2009. With the launch of Nimiq 5 today, ILS has launched half of Telesatís operational fleet.

The ILS Proton Breeze M launched from Pad 39 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 1:19 am today local time (19:19 GMT, 12:19 PDT; 15:19 EDT, September 17). After a 9 hour 15 minute mission, the Breeze M successfully released the Nimiq 5 satellite, weighing almost 5 tons, into geostationary transfer orbit. This was the 348th launch for the Proton.

The Proton Breeze M vehicle was developed and built by Khrunichev Research and Production Space Center of Moscow (Khrunichev), Russiaís premier space manufacturer.

Telesatís Nimiq 5, built by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L), will be located at 72.7 degrees West. The satellite will provide coverage of North America and supports growing demand for direct-to-home television services. This is the fifth SS/L-built satellite in Telesat's global fleet. It is based on the SS/L 1300 platform and is designed for a lifespan of more than 15 years.