SES-1 Satellite For U.S. Put Into Orbit

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SES World Skies announced Saturday the successful launch of the SES-1 satellite, which will provide coverage of the 50 U.S. states and is intended to replace SES's existing AMC-2 and AMC-4 satellites.

SES-1 was manufactured by Orbital Sciences and launched by International Launch Services (ILS) on board a Proton Breeze M booster from the Baikonour Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on April 24 at 17:19 p.m. local time. Eight hours and 58 minutes after lift-off the spacecraft separated from the Breeze M upper stage and was placed into geostationary orbit, and initial signals from SES-1 were received at a control station in Perth, Australia, according to SES World Skies.

ILS Proton SES-1 Liftoff

SES World Skies, which has U.S. headquarters in Princeton, N.J., was created through the combination in 2009 of the former SES New Skis and SES Americom divisions.

SES-1 -- the 42nd satellite in SES's global fleet -- is a hybrid C- and Ku-band spacecraft that will replace SES's existing AMC-2 and AMC-4 satellite at the orbital location of 101 degrees West. The satellite carries 24 active C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders of 36 MHz capacity each; six of the channels in each band can be cross-strapped to the opposite band, enabling new service capability.

"SES-1 is an integral part of our fleet-renewal program over North America," president and CEO Rob Bednarek said in a statement. "The flawless launch of SES-1 will allow us to ensure uninterrupted service for a variety of valued customers at the key orbital position of 101 degrees West."

SES-1 is part of an SES contract with Orbital Sciences for the provision of up to five virtually identical satellites in order to replenish SES' North American satellite fleet.

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