Spaceflight Now: V129

PanAmSat's Galaxy 4R craft shipped to launch site
Posted: April 5, 2000

PanAmSat Corporation announced April 4 that the company has shipped its third satellite in its seven-satellite expansion and redeployment plan to French Guiana for a mid-April launch. Galaxy 4R, PanAmSat's third new satellite for North America in less than four months, will lift off from the Guiana Space Center aboard an Ariane 4 rocket to serve as the permanent replacement for the 99-degree west longitude orbital location. Galaxy 4R will be PanAmSat's 11th North American satellite and its 21st worldwide.

  Galaxy 4R
An artist's concept of the Galaxy 4R communications satellite in Earth orbit. Photo: Hughes

In addition, Galaxy 4R's deployment will complete PanAmSat's satellite expansion and redeployment plan for North America, enabling the migrations of the company's Galaxy 6, Galaxy 7 and Galaxy 11 satellites to new orbital locations.

"The upcoming launch of Galaxy 4R demonstrates PanAmSat's rapid deployment plans for new satellites, building upon the strength of our North American fleet and providing our customers with the most comprehensive and reliable services," said Robert Bednarek, PanAmSat's executive vice president and chief technology officer. "Galaxy 4R will deliver the highest-quality digital and analog video distribution, Internet and telecommunications services throughout the continent."

Galaxy 4R, an HS 601 HP model spacecraft built by Hughes Space and Communications Co., will employ a communications payload consisting of 24 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders. The high-power spacecraft will serve as the primary distribution platform for high-profile video, Internet and telecommunications customers that include National Public Radio, Encore, Hughes Network Systems, NHK and Televisa. Galaxy 4R will also serve as the broadband pipe for the delivery of AOL Plus direct to consumers' homes via Hughes Network Systems' DirecPC satellite Internet service.

In addition, Galaxy 4R will serve as the new platform for PanAmSat's Galaxy 3DTM service, a bundled domestic digital delivery package offering television broadcasters, programmers and business network managers a one-stop shopping resource for end-to-end digital video, audio and data transmission services among more than a dozen North American cities. Galaxy 3D offers cost-effective point-to-multipoint digital transmission services for sporting and special events as well as for program syndication.

Following the deployment of Galaxy 4R, PanAmSat will turn its focus to its international fleet, deploying four new satellites for international markets. The company will launch the PAS-1R and PAS-9 Atlantic Ocean Region satellites, the PAS-10 Indian Ocean Region satellite and the Galaxy 3C spacecraft, serving the United States and Latin America. The new satellites will bring PanAmSat's global fleet to 24 spacecraft by mid-2001, the largest network of commercial geosynchronous communication satellites in the world.

PanAmSat is a leading provider of global video and data broadcasting services via satellite. The company builds, owns and operates networks that deliver entertainment and information to cable television systems, TV broadcast affiliates, direct-to-home TV operators, Internet service providers, telecommunications companies and corporations. With 20 spacecraft in orbit today, PanAmSat has the world's largest commercial geostationary satellite network. The company will expand its global fleet to 24 spacecraft by mid-2001.

Flight data file
Vehicle: Ariane 42L
Payload: Galaxy 4R
Launch date: April 19, 2000
Launch window: 0029-0139 (8:29-9:39 p.m. EDT on 18th)
Launch site: ELA-2, Kourou, French Guina

Pre-launch Briefing
Launch timeline - Chart with times and descriptions of the events to occur during launch.

Ariane 42L - Overview of the rocket to launch Galaxy 4R.

The Galaxy 4R satellite - Overview of the Hughes-built HS601 HP model spacecraft.

Explore the Net
Arianespace - European launch services provider that uses Ariane 4 and 5 rockets to carry satellites into space.

PanAmSat - Leading satellite communications provider and operator of Galaxy 4R once in space.

Hughes Space and Communications - U.S. manufacturer of Galaxy 4R satellite.

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