Intelsat, the world’s leading provider of satellite services, has announced that a Sea Launch AG-provided Land Launch Zenit-3SLB vehicle successfully launched the Intelsat 18 satellite from the Baikonur Space Center in Kazakhstan. Liftoff occurred at 5 p.m. EDT (21:00 GMT), followed by spacecraft separation at 11:34 p.m. EDT (03:34 GMT).
Built by Orbital Sciences Corporation, the satellite will provide capacity to enable enhanced DTH coverage and network services capabilities via Ku-band and C-band platforms. Once operational in November, it will replace Intelsat 701 at 180ºE and is expected to have a useful life of nearly 17 years.
“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.”
OPT currently provides services to the Pacific Ocean region on Intelsat 701.