The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] today announced that it has sent and received the first on-orbit commands from the Boeing-built Spaceway 3™ satellite following a successful launch of the spacecraft. All data shows that Spaceway 3 is healthy and operating normally.
An Ariane 5 rocket lifted the Hughes Network Systems, LLC payload into space yesterday at 7:44 p.m. EDT (23:44 GMT) from Ariane Launch Complex 3 in the tropics of Kourou, French Guiana. Boeing's Mission Control Center in El Segundo, Calif., reported spacecraft acquisition five hours, 46 minutes later, when signals were received at the ground station in Hartebeesthoek, South Africa.
"Boeing is helping Hughes in its vision to 'Connect to the Future' through satellite-based Internet services," said Howard Chambers, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems. "Flying more than 22,000 miles above North America, the Spaceway 3 satellite will allow Hughes Network Systems to provide existing and new customers with high-speed, two-way communications for Internet, data, voice, video and multimedia applications."
Boeing manufactured the high-power, 702 satellite operating in Ka-band to enable Hughes to provide customers a new range of broadband-via-satellite services throughout North America. The Boeing-built technology that will enable these services includes a digital processor, downlink phased array antenna, microwave switch matrix, and flight hardware and software that will provide point-to-point and point-to-multi-point connectivity to Hughes' customers.
Over the next several months, Boeing will work with Hughes to complete on-orbit testing and deployment of the spacecraft's 132-foot solar arrays, as well as satellite check-out and system acceptance. Hughes then will place the satellite into commercial operation, providing advanced HughesNet® services.
Boeing has built more than 200 satellites since 1963 and continues to pioneer technologies and discover new applications that make a difference in the world today and create possibilities for tomorrow.
Hughes Network Systems, LLC (HUGHES) is the global leader in providing broadband satellite networks and services for large enterprises, governments, small businesses, and consumers, with more than 1.2 million systems shipped to customers in over 100 countries. Its broadband satellite products are based on the IPoS (IP over Satellite) global standard, approved by the TIA, ETSI, and ITU standards organizations. Hughes is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hughes Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: HUGH). For additional information, please visit www.hughes.com. Hughes, HughesNet and SPACEWAY are trademarks of Hughes Network Systems, LLC.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $32.4 billion business with 72,000 employees worldwide.