Intelsat-18 was successfully placed into orbit late on October 5th by a Land Launch rocket from the Baikonur space centre in Kazakhstan. Land Launch is a sister company to Sea Launch, although as the name suggests uses a conventional land-based rocket system in the shape of a Zenit-3SLB rocket.
Intelsat-18 will replace Intelsat 701 at 180 deg, and has on board Ku and C-band transponders.
“Intelsat 18 will provide the infrastructure for customers to deliver media content directly to homes throughout the Pacific Ocean region, as well as broadband services to government and commercial users,” said Intelsat CEO David McGlade. “Intelsat’s strategy aligns our fleet investments to support our customers’ growth needs. The Intelsat 18 payload includes a Ku-band beam designed to meet the requirements of Office des Postes et Telecommunications (OPT) of French Polynesia. The customer will use this beam to provide new broadband, expand its domestic DTH service and improve its infrastructure across French Polynesia, with the ability to serve the South Pacific.”