Status Report

Arianespace Flight 146: The payload arrives at the launch site

By SpaceRef Editor
November 9, 2001
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The DIRECTV-4S satellite payload for Flight 146 is in the Spaceport’s S3B
satellite preparation building following its arrival in French Guiana last
night.

DIRECTV-4S landed at Cayennne’s Rochambeau Airport yesterday at 9:30 p.m.,
and was transferred in the early morning hours to the S3B facility. Final
checkout of the spacecraft is underway, and its fueling process will begin
on November 12.

The DIRECTV-4S satellite is a Boeing 601 HP platform that was ordered in
December 1999. This will be the first spacecraft in the DIRECTV fleet to use
highly focused spot beam technology, which will enable the California-based
company to expand its local channel offerings in metropolitan markets.
DIRECTV-4S will further strengthen DIRECTV’s in-orbit redundancy.

DIRECTV-4S will operate at the Ku-band frequency and carry two payloads:
spot beams for local channels, and a national beam payload. The spot beam
payload will use a total of 38 traveling wave-tube amplifiers (TWTAs),
powered by a combination of 30-watt, 45-watt, 65-watt, and 88-watt TWTAs.
The national beam payload will carry two active transponders with further
capability for two active high power and six active low power transponders.

SpaceRef staff editor.