Satellites

Asiasat to launch 2 satellites, expand fleet to 6 in 2014

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MUMBAI: Space launch company Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) and AsiaSat has inked an agreement to launch in 2014 two communications satellites using SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket.

The regional satellite operator in Asia will, thus, expand its fleet from four to six satellites in 2014.

Asiasat president, CEO William Wade said, "We are pleased to have SpaceX as our launch partner for the two upcoming missions. We look forward to the timely and successful launches of AsiaSat 6 and AsiaSat 8, thereby expanding our fleet from four to six satellites in 2014 to provide more high quality and comprehensive satellite services in the Asia-Pacific region".

AsiaSat 6 and AsiaSat 8 are scheduled to launch in the first half of 2014 from SpaceX's launch complex at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, USA.

Asiasat 6 will have 28 high-powered C-band transponders while Asiasat 8 will have 24 Ku-band transponders and a Ka-band beam. The high-powered transponders on the satellite will enable the use of small antennas on the ground. The two SS/L 1300 satellites will serve Asia, the Middle East and Australasia.





SpaceX CEO, CTO Elon Musk said, "SpaceX is proud to be the choice of AsiaSat, a pioneer in advancing satellite communications in Asia. We are producing the most advanced launch vehicles in the world, and the international launch market has responded--commercial launches now represent over 60 per cent of our upcoming missions."

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