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Sea Launch Lofts Koreasat 5.


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Koreasat 5 launch.
Koreasat 5 launch. Image credit: Boeing.

A Zenit-3SL vehicle blasted off Tuesday morning from the Sea Launch facility, carrying a Koreasat 5 telecommunications satellite into orbit. The launch occurred at 0327 GMT (11:27pm EDT, Aug 21), and the spacecraft was placed successfully into a geosynchronous transfer orbit about an hour later. The satellite will operate at 113 degrees east, and provide both commercial and military communications services.

Sea Launch Company today successfully delivered the Koreasat 5 communications satellite to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO). Early data indicate the spacecraft is accurately positioned and in excellent condition.

A Zenit-3SL vehicle lifted off at 8:27 pm PDT (03:27 GMT, Aug. 22) from the Odyssey Launch Platform, positioned at 154 degrees West Longitude in the equatorial Pacific. All systems performed nominally throughout flight. The Block DM upper stage inserted the 4,448 kg (9,806 lb) Spacebus 4000 C1 platform to GTO, on its way to a final orbital position of 113 degrees East Longitude. A ground station at Fucino, Italy, acquired the first signal from the satellite shortly after spacecraft separation.

Built by Alcatel Alenia Space for the KT Corporation and Korea's Agency for Defense Development, the hybrid multi-band satellite will be part of South Korea's new high-capacity Spacecom System over the Asia-Pacific. This is Sea Launch's fourth successful mission of 2006 – two additional missions are planned for this year.

Following the completion of the Koreasat 5 mission, Rob Peckham, president and general manager of Sea Launch, congratulated the Agency for Defense Development, KT Corporation and Alcatel Alenia Space. “We take great pride in successfully delivering South Korea's first dual-use spacecraft,” he said. “At Sea Launch, we strive to exceed our customers' expectations and build collaborative relationships built on honesty and trust.”

“I want to extend our thanks to everyone involved in achieving this milestone event. In particular, I want to thank our partners and contractors and the entire Sea Launch team for continuing to build our legacy, one successful launch, one satisfied customer at a time.”

Sea Launch Company, LLC, headquartered in Long Beach, Calif., is the world's most reliable heavy-lift commercial launch service. This international partnership offers the most direct and cost-effective route to geostationary orbit. With the advantage of a launch site on the Equator, the robust 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 successfully completed mission, please visit the Sea Launch website at: www.sea-launch.com

Original Source: Sea Launch News Release


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