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Satellite Technology Feature Article

May 14, 2012

Next Generation Satellite, EchoStar XVII Arrives at Launching Location

By Monica Gleberman, Contributing Writer


The EchoStar XVII satellite, built for Hughes Network Systems (News - Alert) by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L), has arrived at its launch location at the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. The satellite will be loaded onto an Ariane 5 launch vehicle by Arianaspace to ultimately provide HughesNet Gen4 high-speed Internet service to users throughout North America.

Satellites have been used since 1957 with the launch of the first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1. Since then, thousands have been launched into space for space stations, security measures, atmosphere monitoring, and for communication. EchoStar XVII will be one of the highest capacity satellites ever built.

“Broadband access is essential for participation in today’s Internet economy,” said John Celli, president of Space Systems/Loral. “It has been our privilege to team with Hughes and apply our four decades of experience with Ka-band satellites to help make their vision of expanded high-speed satellite Internet access across North America a reality.”

EchoStar XVII is a high-throughput satellite using an SS/L 1300 platform to deliver broadband solutions to consumers, businesses, and government customers. SS/L said the new “geostationary satellite employs a multi-spot beam, bent pip Ka-Band architecture, providing significant additional capacity for HughesNet service in North America and will augment the SPACEWAY 3 satellite system.” The company also said the satellite will be using a new JUPITER high-throughput technology that will help provide access to 100 gigabits of capacity per second.

The ultimate plan is for this new satellite to expand Internet coverage and focus on specific areas that are in need of more broadband services. The satellite will have a multi-spot beam capable of specifically targeting these areas and improving them.

Pradman Kaul, president of Hughes, said this satellite is bringing next-generation technology from orbit to consumers. “EchoStar XVII will bring HughesNet Gen4 high-speed Internet access to over 1.5 million consumer and small business subscribers, further securing our position as the world’s leading provider of satellite broadband services,” said Hughes. “Space Systems/Loral has been an excellent partner in building this complex spacecraft and we are very excited to see it launch next month.”




Edited by Brooke Neuman



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