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Sea Launch Prepares For The Launch Of DirecTV 11

Sea Launch to put U.S. satellite into orbit on March 17
The launch of a Zenit-3SL carrier rocket with the DirecTV 11 broadcast satellite on board has been scheduled for March 17, a spokesperson for Sea Launch consortium said on Friday. The satellite, with mass of approximately 6 metric tons, is designed to deliver national high-definition (HD) programming and local HD channels to subscribers throughout the United States. "The launch has been scheduled for 3:49 p.m. PDT (22:49 GMT)," Paula Korn said. Lifting off from the Odyssey Launch Platform in the Pacific Ocean, the Zenit-3SL rocket will place the DirecTV 11 satellite, with a designed lifetime of 12 years, into geosynchronous transfer orbit, with the spacecraft separating from the upper stage at 2,130 km (1,323 miles) above the Indian Ocean.
by Staff Writers
Long Beach CA (SPX) Mar 09, 2008
The Odyssey Launch Platform and the Sea Launch Commander have departed Sea Launch Home Port for the equatorial Pacific, in preparation for the launch of the DirecTV 11 broadcast satellite, planned for Monday, March 17. Liftoff is expected at the opening of a 58-minute launch window, at 3:49 pm Pacific Daylight Time (22:49 GMT).

Upon arrival at the launch site at 154 degrees West Longitude, the team will ballast the platform to launch depth and initiate a 72-hour countdown. During this period, they will perform a final series of tests on the launch system and the spacecraft.

At launch, a Zenit-3SL vehicle will insert the 5,923 kg (13,058 lb) DirecTV 11 satellite into geosynchronous transfer orbit, on its way to a final orbital location of 99.2 degrees West Longitude.

Sea Launch will provide live coverage of the DirecTV 11 mission via satellite and on the company website, beginning at 3:30 pm PDT (22:30 GMT) on March 17.

DirecTV 11 is one of three recent Boeing 702-model spacecraft built for DirecTV and is among the largest and most powerful Ka-band satellites built to date.

The on-board technology of this direct-to-home satellite will enable DirecTV to continue to expand its industry-leading lineup of quality high-definition television (HDTV) programming.

DirecTV 11, combined with the DirecTV 10 satellite already in orbit, will provide DirecTV with the capacity for 150 national HD channels and will be capable of supporting spot beams carrying 1,500 local HD channels.

DirecTV 11 will continue DirecTV's massive capacity expansion and further strengthen its position as the leading provider of HD programming in the United States.

This is the fourth mission Sea Launch will execute for DirecTV. Previous satellites include Spaceway 1 (April 26, 2005), DirecTV 7S (May 4, 2004) and DirecTV 1R (October 9, 1999).

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Thuraya-3 Satellite Successfully Launched To Orbit
Abu Dhabi, UAE (SPX) Jan 16, 2008
The third Geo-mobile satellite of Thuraya Satellite Telecom has successfully been launched by Sea Launch, allowing Thuraya to embark on major expansion plans and provide its cutting-edge mobile satellite services in the Asia-Pacific region in the first quarter of 2008.

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