EUTELSAT 3D Launched

International Launch Services (ILS) successfully placed the EUTELSAT 3D satellite into Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO), today, for Eutelsat Communications of Paris, France.

With this mission, ILS, a leader in providing mission integration and launch services to the global commercial satellite industry, completed its 80th Proton launch overall and 3rd Proton launch in 2013.

The Proton Breeze M vehicle carrying EUTELSAT 3D launched from Pad 39 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, today, at 22:02 local time(16:02GMT and 12:02 EDT). The satellite, built by Thales Alenia Space on the reliable Spacebus 4000 platform and weighing nearly 5.5 metric tons at liftoff, was released 9 hours and 13 minutes after a standard 5-burn Breeze M mission. This was the 7th Eutelsat satellite launched on a Proton and the 9th Thales Alenia Space Satellite launched on an ILS Proton.

EUTELSAT 3D will initially be located at 3 degrees east longitude, until the launch of EUTELSAT 3B in 2014, at which time it will continue its service at 7 degrees east longitude. From its orbital locations, the satellite will provide resources, reach and flexibility to address the high-growth rate in the video, data, telecom, and broadband markets. This Ku and Ka-band satellite will serve customers across Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia.

Since its maiden flight in 1965, this was the 386th aggregate launch for the Proton vehicle, including both Federal and commercial missions. The Proton Breeze M vehicle is developed and built by Khrunichev Research and Production Space Center of Moscow, Russia's premier space industry manufacturer and majority shareholder in ILS.

ILS President Phil Slack stated, "The Proton vehicle and Eutelsat partnership dates back 13 years starting with the SESAT-1 launch on Proton in 2000. After seven launches, including the 50th ILS Proton launch in 2009 with the EUTELSAT 10A satellite, we are honored that Eutelsat continues to place their trust in us to enable the expansion of their business. Many thanks to the Eutelsat, Thales Alenia Space, Khrunichev and ILS teams for ensuring mission success with the launch of EUTELSAT 3D."

Michel de Rosen, Eutelsat CEO, "We thank ILS and Khrunichev for this flawless launch which maintains our perfect track record of success since our first Proton flight in 2000. I'm happy to say that EUTELSAT 3D is well on its way to 3* East, where it will go into service next month. The performance of the Proton launcher gives us the flexibility we need to further increase our resources and commercial flexibility which is highly valued in our business."

About ILS and Khrunichev

ILS is a world leader in providing launch services for global satellite operators and offers a complete array of services and support, from contract signing through mission management and on-orbit delivery. ILS has exclusive rights to market the Proton vehicle to commercial satellite operators worldwide and is a U.S. company headquartered in Reston, VA., near Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.ilslaunch.com.

Khrunichev, which holds the majority interest in ILS, is one of the cornerstones of the Russian space industry. Khrunichev manufactures the Proton system and is developing the Angara launch system. The Proton launches from facilities at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and has a heritage of more than 385 missions since 1965. Khrunichev includes, among its branches, a number of key manufacturers of launch vehicle and spacecraft components in Moscow and in other cities of the Russian Federation. For more information, visit www.khrunichev.com.

Please follow SpaceRef on Twitter and Like us on Facebook.