International Launch Services (ILS) and SES have announced the launch of SES-6 in 2013 on ILS Proton. SES-6 is the sixth mission under the SES multi launch agreement signed in June 2007 between ILS and SES Satellite Leasing Limited, SES’s satellite procurement and leasing company in the Isle of Man.
SES-6, weighing about 6 metric tons at launch, is being built on Astrium’s Eurostar 3000 platform and is expected to carry 43 C-band and 43 Ku-band transponders to serve SES’s existing cable-television customers and provide capacity for growth. SES-6 will replace NSS-806 at the orbital location of 319.5 degrees East, and will provide enhanced coverage in North, Central and South America and will further support applications like HD, DTH, enterprise networks and digital inclusion projects in the Latin America region serving over 18 million households.
In addition to SES-6 in 2013, there are three other SES missions on ILS Proton scheduled in 2011 and 2012 under the MLA: ILS Proton will also launch SES’s QuetzSat-1 this summer.
The Proton vehicle, built by ILS majority owner Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center, is Russia’s premier heavy-lift launcher and has a heritage of 363 flights since the 1960s. Proton has launched 29 successful consecutive missions in 29 months.
Frank McKenna, president of ILS, said in a statement: “We are pleased to continue to provide the kind of flexibility that the MLA was designed to allow as well as help facilitate the expansion of services and capacity in the Americas for SES with the ILS Proton launch of SES-6. The ILS and Khrunichev teams look forward to delivering the same quality and performance for SES on the SES-6 mission and all of our upcoming ILS Proton launches with SES.”
Romain Bausch, president and CEO of SES, said, “The SES-6 satellite is significant for Latin America and the Caribbean as there is rapid growth in these areas and we expect this trend to continue. At the same time, this launch will allow us to provide an early replacement and a meaningful upgrade to our Americas coverage. We have a long history with ILS and have developed an outstanding partnership over 15 years of doing business together. We look forward to working with the ILS and Khrunichev teams on the launch of SES-6 mission and our future launches on ILS Proton.”