Status Report

ILS successfully launches Sirius-2 satellite – Tenth successful Proton launch this year

By SpaceRef Editor
September 5, 2000
Filed under

International Launch Services (ILS)
successfully launched the Sirius-2 digital audio radio service satellite into
high inclination transfer orbit today for Sirius Satellite Radio of New York, NY, USA. The Proton launch was conducted for
Space Systems Loral (SS/L) under the auspices of ILS by a combined American
and Russian team.

The satellite, which is the second of a three-satellite Sirius
constellation, was launched on a Proton/ Block DM from the Baikonur Cosmodrome
in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Successful spacecraft separation was confirmed
approximately 2-1/2 hours after liftoff.

“We are extremely pleased that the Proton launch vehicle provided another
successful launch for Sirius Satellite Radio and SS/L,” said Dr. Mark J.
Albrecht, president of ILS. “ILS is proud of its partnering role in
delivering the first digital satellite radio service in the United States and
of our team’s commitment and dedication in making it a reality. We are
looking forward to working with Space Systems/Loral and Sirius Satellite Radio
on the Sirius-3 launch later this year.”

For ILS, the McLean, VA-based launch services provider, the Sirius-2
mission marks its third flight on Proton this year, the tenth launch for
Khrunichev and the 16th successful commercial launch on Proton since formation
of the ILS joint venture. The third satellite in Sirius’ three-satellite
constellation is also scheduled to be launched aboard Proton. Proton is built
by Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center at its complex near
Moscow, Russian Federation.

“We are very pleased to be working again with ILS to provide another one
of our customers with a reliable launch,” said John Kleineberg, president of
Space Systems/Loral. “We expect this launch to be as successful as the
earlier launch of Sirius-1, and we look forward to an equally good launch for
Sirius-3 later this year.”

From its three orbiting satellites, Sirius will directly broadcast up to
100 channels of digital-quality programming to motorists throughout the
continental United States for a monthly subscription fee of $9.95. Sirius
will deliver 50 channels of commercial-free music in virtually every genre,
and up to 50 channels of news, sports and entertainment such as CNBC, NPR, SCI
FI Channel, Classic Radio and the BBC. Sirius’ broad and deep range of almost
every music format as well as its news, sports and entertainment programming
is not available on conventional radio in any market in the United States.

Sirius has alliances to install three-band (AM/FM/SAT) radios in Ford,
Chrysler, BMW, Mercedes, Mazda, Jaguar and Volvo vehicles. In addition,
Sirius has alliances with numerous manufacturers to furnish radios to
automakers, as well as adapters to electronics retailers that will allow
radios in existing vehicles to receive Sirius broadcasts.

“The successful launch of Sirius-2 brings us closer to the realization of
our satellite radio network,” said Robert D. Briskman, Sirius executive vice
president, engineering. “We congratulate our partners at ILS for their
efforts in bringing about this launch, and we look forward to launching
Sirius-3 to complete our constellation.”

All Sirius satellites are custom-designed for satellite radio and are the
first in the world to use the S-band for satellite delivery of audio content.
They were built by Space Systems/Loral of Palo Alto, CA. Space Systems/Loral
is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Loral Space & Communications and is a premier
provider of a full range of satellite systems and services.

Headquartered in McLean, VA, USA, International Launch Services is a joint
venture stock company established in 1995 to jointly market the Russian-built
Proton and the Lockheed Martin-built Atlas to the worldwide satellite launch
market. The company currently offers the broadest range of launcher products
in the world along with the highest reliability in the industry. ILS is owned
by Lockheed Martin Commercial Launch Services (LMCLS) and the Lockheed
Khrunichev Energia International (LKEI) joint venture.

SpaceRef staff editor.