Intelsat 20 launches in French Guiana

Intelsat 20 launches in French Guiana

Satellite service provider Intelsat has announced the launch of the Intelsat 20 satellite from Kourou, French Guiana.

Intelsat 20 is expected to provide a high power distribution of video, voice and broadband services in Asia, Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Russia. Lift-off occurred yesterday afternoon EDT, with signal acquisition occurring approximately 40 minutes following the launch.

Intelsat 20 provides C-band and Ku-band for DTH television, cellular backhaul and VSAT services. The satellite provides premium programming that is carried by top Indian cable MSOs and DTH operators, and it is estimated the service will reach 90 million pay-TV subscribers in India. Intelsat says it also hosts the largest DTH platform in Africa.

The system will be operational in September, and will replace Intelsat 7 and Intelsat 10. The system is expected to have a service life of over 18 years.

“With C-band coverage over four continents and four regionally focused Ku-band beams, Intelsat 20 provides enhanced replacement capacity for our prime video neighbourhood at 68.5 degrees east for DTH and distribution services,” said Intelsat CEO, David McGlade.

Intelsat has a further two planned launches this year. Intelsat 21 and Intelsat 23 are scheduled to launch in Q3 2012.