- Press Release
- August 19, 2022
EUTELSAT Dedicates Its New Bird to Sir Arthur C. Clarke, ‘Father’ of the Geostationary Orbit
BAIKONUR, Kazakhstan – SESAT, a new EUTELSAT satellite, was successfully
launched into geostationary orbit in the night of
April 17 by a Proton/Block DM launcher out of the Baikonour Cosmodrome.
Lift-off took place at 03.06 Baikonour time (April 18), 21.06 GMT (April 17).
Separation of the satellite from the rocket occurred six hours and 35 minutes
after launch and was followed by the successful deployment of the solar array
and antenna deployment.
SESAT is scheduled to go into service in June at the 36 degrees East
orbital position. Its 18 Ku-band transponders will be used for a full range
of services including data and videobroadcasting, Internet backbone
connections, high-speed Internet access, distance-learning, transfer of
software, and the EUTELTRACS messaging and positioning service for mobiles.
Following confirmation of separation of the launcher from the satellite
EUTELSAT Director General Giuliano Berretta declared: “As the ‘father’ of the
geostationary orbit, that is home to all our satellites, we are very proud to
dedicate this satellite to Sir Arthur C. Clarke. His visionary theories on
use of the geostationary arc (also called the Clarke Belt), presented in
Wireless World as far back as 1945, opened the door to radically enhanced
communications. As a result, commercial satellite operators such as EUTELSAT
are today delivering television, radio and interactive services to millions of
homes, connecting businesses around the world and now tapping into the
Internet for a new generation of sophisticated consumer and corporate
As the first satellite contracted by a western satellite operator to a
Russian prime contractor (NPO-PM), SESAT is also a ground-breaking industrial
venture. The satellite’s design, platform and Assembly Integration Tests were
managed by NPO-PM and the communications payload was supplied by Alcatel
Space. Launch services were provided by the Russian Aviation and Space
With two beams — one stretched Widebeam over Europe, western Siberia,
North Africa and the Middle East, and a steerable Spotbeam over India — SESAT
will enable EUTELSAT to consolidate its position in its core markets, and will
open its first gateway to the Indian subcontinent to meet high bandwidth
demands for Internet traffic between Europe and India. Up to six of the
18 transponders on the satellite can be switched one by one into the Steerable
Beam. Communications can be established between the Widebeam and the
Steerable Beam and also within the Steerable Beam in order to offer users a
high degree of operational flexibility.
SESAT will shortly be joined at EUTELSAT’s 36 degrees East orbital
position by the W4 satellite which is due for launch in the middle of May from
Cape Canaveral by an Atlas III launcher. The two satellites will enable
EUTELSAT to consolidate its position as a leading provider of capacity for
television and data services and open important business opportunities in
Russia, Africa and Asia. With the addition of SESAT and W4, EUTELSAT’s
resource will consist of 17 Ku-band satellites spanning the orbital arc from
12.5 degrees West to 48 degrees East.
Paris-based EUTELSAT is Europe’s leading satellite operator and ranks as
one of the largest globally, with reach across Europe, large parts of Africa
and the Middle East and connectivity with America. In addition to
broadcasting over 600 analogue and digital TV channels to more than 81 million
satellite and cable homes EUTELSAT satellites are used for high-speed Internet
connections and Internet backbone traffic, corporate networks, satellite
newsgathering, telephony, and for mobile voice, data and positioning services.
For more information, visit EUTELSAT’s web site at http://www.eutelsat.com .