AsiaSat 6, the newest communications satellite of Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Limited (AsiaSat), successfully lifted off on 7 September at Hong Kong Time 1:00 p.m. (1:00 a.m. EDT or Cape Canaveral local time). This is the second SpaceX Falcon 9 launch this summer for AsiaSat, after AsiaSat 8 on 5 August.
Approximately 32 minutes after liftoff, the AsiaSat 6 spacecraft successfully separated from the launch vehicle. AsiaSat acquired the first signals from the satellite in Hong Kong 55 minutes after launch. Over the next few days, AsiaSat 6 will move to its operational position, some 36,000 km above the equator where it will undergo in-orbit testing before being brought into commercial use.
"This year marks a major milestone for AsiaSat. The addition of AsiaSat 6 to AsiaSat's expanding fleet of five in-orbit satellites including the new AsiaSat 8 significantly enhances our capability to offer a wider range of transponder capacity to our clients," said William Wade, President and Chief Executive Officer of AsiaSat.
"We thank the SpaceX, Space Systems/Loral and the AsiaSat team for their dedication and professionalism in achieving this successful launch. We look forward to offering more quality satellite services on AsiaSat 6 to serve the fast growing demand in the Asia-Pacific region."
AsiaSat 6, based on Space Systems/Loral 1300 platform, is designed to provide excellent power and region-wide connectivity at its nominal orbital location of 120 degrees East. With 28 high-powered C-band transponders and a design life of 15 years, AsiaSat 6 offers two beams, one global beam and one regional beam for a broad range of video distribution and broadband network services in the Asia-Pacific region.