Zombie Bird Flies By Two More AMC Satellites


The non-responding Galaxy 15 satellite has now passed 14 satellites without incident, including SES World Skies’ AMC-1 and AMC-18 (see ‘Zombie’ Satellite Still Stalking The Skies).

According to an update on Intelsat’s website, Galaxy 15 completed the AMC-1 satellite fly-by on Dec. 4 and is expected to pass SES-1 on Dec. 15.

“The Galaxy 15 satellite continues to drift eastward on a stable and predictable path,” Intesat says.

G-15 passed AMC-11 earlier this year, also without incident. Intelsat believes the satellite stopped responding in April 2010 after a solar flare fried its electronics.

Intelsat says it has worked closely with Orbital Sciences Corp., the satellite’s manufacturer, to expand and update the estimated “off-point” date, when the bird will lose power. “Based on the revised analysis, the estimated window for a Galaxy 15 off-point and loss of power can occur as early as this month,” Intelsat said.

And, G-15 may even be brought back from the undead: “There continues to be a possibility that Galaxy 15 could be recovered after it off-points,” according to Intelsat’s FAQ for the spacecraft.