Advanced Television

SpaceX readies 2 Intelsat launches

November 7, 2022

By Chris Forrester

SpaceX is scheduling November 8th for the launch of two Intelsat satellites: the operator’s Galaxy-31 and Galaxy-32 craft.

The satellites are the next in Intelsat’s comprehensive Galaxy fleet refresh plan, a new generation of technology that will provide Intelsat Media customers in North America with high-performance media distribution capabilities and to cable operators cable head-ends.

Galaxy 31 and Galaxy 32 are also critical to Intelsat’s US C-band clearing strategy which helps pave the way for 5G’s rollout in the US.

Launch timetable, subject the usual weather and technical considerations, is timed 11.06am Florida time. However, as this is written the weather prospects at the Cape are not looking good and launch could slip a day or two.

SpaceX will use one of its ultra-reliable Falcon 9 rockets to take the two satellites into their geostationary transfer orbits.

Built by Maxar Technologies, Galaxy 31 and Galaxy 32 will eventually be positioned in geostationary orbit to provide C-band video and television broadcast services in the US.

The Falcon 9’s first stage booster will be expended on this mission and – unusually – not be landed on the floating barge. Instead, the Falcon’s first stage will splash down in the Pacific Ocean and not be recovered.

This mission will be the 185th Falcon 9 launch, and the 48th re-flight of the first stage booster this year. Another SpaceX record expected to be broken is that this flight is the 52nd launch this year for Elon Musk’s rocket company.

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