The Sea Launch team has arrived at the equatorial launch site and initiated a 72-hour countdown to liftoff of the Telstar 14/Estrela do Sul 1 mission for Loral Space & Communications. All systems are proceeding on schedule for the launch, scheduled for Saturday, January 10, 8:13 pm PST (4:13:00 GMT, January 11) in a two-hour launch window.
The Odyssey Launch Platform and its sister ship, the Sea Launch Commander, arrived at the launch site yesterday. The marine crew began the process of ballasting the Launch Platform about 65 feet, to launch depth, in preparation for launch operations. The vessels are now stationed alongside each other, frequently connected by a link bridge that enables foot traffic between them. On the day of launch, the platform will be evacuated and all personnel will be stationed on the ship, three miles uprange, throughout launch operations.
Sea Launch's three-stage Zenit-3SL rocket will loft the 4694 kg (10,350 lb) Telstar 14/Estrela do Sul 1 satellite to a high perigee geosynchronous transfer orbit from the Odyssey Launch Platform, positioned on the Equator. Following the successfully completed mission, the spacecraft will be located in geostationary orbit at 63 degrees West Longitude, above Brazil.
Telstar 14/Estrela do Sul 1 will be operated by Loral Skynet do Brasil. The spacecraft, a 1300 series satellite, manufactured by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) in Palo Alto, Calif, carries 41 Ku-band transponders with five unique and interconnecting coverage beams. Fifty percent of the satellite's power will be focused on Brazil, providing a dedicated Ku-band solution for the Brazilian marketplace. The satellite's other beams will cover the Americas and the North Atlantic Ocean, where Connexion by BoeingSM will use the satellite to provide its Internet-to-aircraft service.
Sea Launch will provide a live satellite broadcast and simultaneous webcast of the Telstar 14/Estrela do Sul 1 mission on January 10, beginning at 7:55pm PST (3:55:00 GMT, January 11).
Sea Launch Company, LLC, headquartered in Long Beach, Calif., is a world leader in providing heavy-lift commercial launch services. This multinational partnership offers the most direct and cost-effective route to geostationary orbit. With the advantage of a launch site on the Equator, the reliable Zenit-3SL rocket can lift a heavier spacecraft mass or provide longer life on orbit, offering best value plus schedule assurance. For additional information and images of this mission, please visit the Sea Launch website at: www.sea-launch.com
Note to editors: Sea Launch will carry a live satellite feed and streaming video of the entire mission on the day of launch. We will post transponder coordinates as well as additional information and high resolution images, as available, on a