Satellites

PAS-10 launched; Indian channels to shift from PAS-4?

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The latest satellite in the PanAmSat (PAS) series, the PAS-10, which will cover several countries in the Indian Ocean area, including India, was launched from the Baikonur space centre in Kazakhstan on Tuesday at 0111 GMT, according to the Interfax news agency.

The satellite was launched aboard a Russian Proton rocket and successfully brought into orbit some 228 kilometres above Earth at 0121 GMT, space officials said. PAS-10, the sixth Boeing-built satellite delivered to PanAmSat in the last 17 months, will provide international services from its orbital position of 68.5 degrees East longitude.

The launch is of significance to Indian broadcasters because customers beaming off PAS-4 will now be shifted to the PAS-10 satellite, a company representative says. PAS-4 has been running on a back-up processor since 1999 after the onboard battery failed and the main satellite control processor packed up.

Among the channels which are currently on PAS-4 are: National broadcaster Doordarshan (DD News; DD Sports; DD1, DD International), B4U, ESPN Asia, MTV India, Nickelodeon, HBO, CNN, BBC World, Cartoon Network, TCM, Discovery, Animal Planet, UTN and the religious channel Maharishi Veda Vision.

The PAS-10 is a Boeing 601HP satellite which was ordered September 1999. The 9-600-watt satellite will provide international services to Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe from its orbital position of 68.5 degrees East longitude. It has 48 transponders on board, 24 in Ku-band and 24 in C-band and has a design life of at least 15 years.

PAS-10 is intended to serve in the development of more advanced broadcast, high-speed data and Internet services across Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

(Picture courtesy Panamsat)

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