International Launch Services (ILS) launched their Proton-M rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Tuesday at 19:36 GMT. The Proton’s Briz-M (Breeze-M) Upper Stage the completed a multi-hour mission to deploy Canada’s Anik G1 telecommunications satellite into its desired transfer orbit.
Proton M Launch:
The Proton booster that was used to launch the satellite was 4.1 m (13.5 ft) in diameter along its second and third stages, with a first stage diameter of 7.4 m (24.3 ft). Overall height of the three stages of the Proton booster is 42.3 m (138.8 ft).
The Proton vehicle has a heritage of nearly 400 launches since 1965 and is built by Khrunichev Research and State Production Center, one of the pillars of the global space industry and the majority owner of ILS.
The first stage consists of a central tank containing the oxidizer surrounded by six outboard fuel tanks. Each fuel tank also carries one of the six RD-276 engines that provide first stage power. Total first stage vacuum-rated level thrust is 11.0 MN (2,500,000 lbf).
Of a conventional cylindrical design, the second stage is powered by three RD-0210 engines plus one RD-0211 engine and develops a vacuum thrust of 2.4 MN (540,000 lbf).
Powered by one RD-0213 engine, the third stage develops thrust of 583 kN (131,000 lbf), and a four-nozzle vernier engine that produces thrust of 31 kN (7,000 lbf). Guidance, navigation, and control of the Proton M during operation of the first three stages is carried out by a triple redundant closed-loop digital avionics system mounted in the Proton’s third stage.
The Briz-M (Breeze-M) upper stage is the Phase III variant, a recent upgrade which utilizes two new high-pressure tanks (80 liters) to replace six smaller tanks, along with the relocation of command instruments towards the centre – in order to mitigate shock loads when the additional propellant tank is being jettisoned.
The Proton M launch vehicle was utilizing a 5-burn Breeze M mission design. The first three stages of the Proton used a standard ascent profile to place the orbital unit (Breeze M upper stage and the Anik G1 satellite) into a sub-orbital trajectory.
From this point in the mission, the Breeze M performed planned mission maneuvers to advance the orbital unit first to a circular parking orbit, then to an intermediate orbit, followed by a transfer orbit, and finally to a geostationary transfer orbit.
A recent ILS mission with the Briz-M suffered a failure during the third burn with the Yamal 402 satellite. However, it performed without issue during the previous ILS mission, which successfully deployed the Satmex 8 satellite into orbit.
Separation of the Anik G1 satellite was scheduled to occur approximately 9 hours, 13 minutes after liftoff, with ILS later confirming the mission – which had a target orbit at separation of 9,138 km perigee, 35,786 km apogee, at an inclination of 13.4 degrees – was successful.
Anik G1 is a commercial communications satellite built by SSL for Telesat. The multi-mission, 55 transponder satellite will be located at 107.3 degrees West longitude.
This satellite will double C- and Ku-band capacity over South America from this orbital location, provide additional DTH services in extended Ku-Band and provide military X-band coverage of the Americas and substantial portions of the Pacific Ocean.
In total, the 4,905 kg satellite sports 24 C-band transponders, 28 Ku-band transponders and 3 X-band transponders. The bird, based on the SSL 1300 platform, has an anticipated service life of 15 years.
This was the second ILS Proton launch in 2013, the 79th ILS Proton launch Overall. It was also the ninth Telesat satellite launched on ILS Proton and the 26th SSL satellite launched on ILS Proton.
BAIKONUR COSMODROME, Kazakhstan, April 16, 2013 – International Launch Services (ILS), a leader in providing mission integration and launch services to the global commercial satellite industry, successfully delivered Telesat’s Anik G1 satellite into orbit today on an ILS Proton. Telesat is a leading global fixed satellite services operator providing reliable and secure satellite-delivered communications solutions worldwide to broadcast, telecom, corporate and government customers.
The ILS Proton lifted off from Pad 39 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 12:36 a.m. today local time (April 15: 6:36 p.m. GMT and 2:36 p.m. EDT). Utilizing the standard 5-burn Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) mission design, the Breeze M successfully released the Anik G1 satellite into orbit after a 9 hour and 13 minute mission. The satellite was manufactured by Space Systems/Loral (SSL) and built on the highly reliable 1300 platform. Weighing 4.9 metric tons at liftoff, Anik G1 was the 26th SSL satellite launched on an ILS Proton, as well as the 9th Telesat satellite launched by an ILS Proton.
Anik G1 has 24 C-band, 28 Ku-band and 3 X-band transponders that form a 55 transponder, multi-mission satellite. Once in service, Anik G1 will provide direct-to-home (DTH) television service in Canada, as well as broadband, voice, data, and video services in South America where economic growth has driven high demand for satellite capacity. It will also be the first commercial satellite with substantial X-band coverage for government communications over the Americas and the Pacific Ocean including Hawaii.
Anik G1 will be positioned at 107.3 degrees West longitude where it will be co-located with Telesat’s Anik F1 satellite effectively doubling both the C-band and Ku-band transponders serving South America from the 107.3 degrees West orbital location.
Today’s mission was the 385th launch for Proton since its maiden flight in 1965 and the 79th ILS Proton Launch overall. The Proton Breeze M vehicle is developed and built by Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center of Moscow, Russia’s premier space industry manufacturer and majority shareholder in ILS.
ILS President Phil Slack stated, “We thank Telesat for once again entrusting us with their satellite, their business and for their partnership over 14 years. We also want to express our gratitude for the work of all of the teams involved, including ILS, Khrunichev, Telesat, and SSL. Their efforts ensured a successful mission today.”
Telesat’s President and CEO, Dan Goldberg remarked, “This is an important new satellite for Telesat and our customers. Anik G1 provides expansion capacity for DTH services over Canada, a new X-band payload for government services, and additional C-band and Ku-band capacity for South America, where demand continues to grow. Telesat would like to thank ILS, SSL and everyone who played a role in making this launch a success.”