Hot Bird 7A in autumn 2005
Alcatel Space, a subsidiary of Alcatel and Eutelsat S.A., signed a contract for the construction of the HOT BIRD 7A communications satellite, which launch is planned for the autumn of 2005. The order for this new satellite follows the loss of HOT BIRD 7 during launch last December.
In addition to the original specifications, HOT BIRDTM 7AÂ’s mission has been expanded to provide additional back-up and replacement capacity at EutelsatÂ’s key orbital slot, 13 degrees East, the worldÂ’s leading neighbourhood for satellite television broadcasting. This expanded mission has led to the choice of a larger, more flexible satellite platform than for the original version.
HOT BIRD 7A will be based on Alcatel SpaceÂ’s Spacebus 3000 B3 platform. Launch is planned for the autumn of 2005, when the new satellite will join EutelsatÂ’s HOT BIRDÂ™ family of satellites co-located at the 13 degree East slot, currently broadcasting 676 video channels and 565 audio channels. Equipped with 38 Ku-band transponders of 33 MHz minimum each (end of life), HOT BIRD 7A will replace HOT BIRD 1. The other 20 transponders will be available for potential back-up and replacement capacity for the HOT BIRD 2, 3 and 4 satellites. HOT BIRD 7A has a design life of 15 years.
HOT BIRD 7A will be assembled and integrated in the clean rooms at Alcatel SpaceÂ’s Cannes and Toulouse plants in southern France. It will weigh about 4,000 kg at launch, and its solar panels will provide 10 kW of electrical power.
Following the contract signature, Eutelsat CEO Giuliano Berretta said:
HOT BIRD 7A will enable us to increase our capacity at the 13 degree East slot to 102 transponders dedicated to broadcast services for Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, regions in which Eutelsat has a penetration rate of 80 percent of the households with satellite or cable TV reception. The new satellite is very flexible as well, which enables it to potentially replace three other HOT BIRDÂ™ satellites if necessary. This latest order reflects our commitment to maintaining, at this key orbital broadcasting position, a young fleet of satellites and to consolidating our back-up capabilities.
Regards SATDUDE. 😀