ASTRA 2G’s preliminary testing in orbit has been completed successfully by Airbus Defence and Space and SES has subsequently taken over the satellite’s control, their plan is for the validation of the communications payload’s performance on the satellite.
SES will then commence a service that is operational at its location in orbit of 28.2/28.5 degrees East, providing next generation broadband and broadcast facilities. Baikonur, Kazakhstan was the location of the ASTRA 2G telecoms satellite’s launch at 21:24 GMT on 27 December last year aboard an ILS Proton Breeze M launcher. The space craft control center operated by ABS (Airbus Defence and Space) in Toulouse managed and controlled the phases of Early Orbit and Launch. On January 2 geostationary orbit was achieved by the satellite following a chain of manoeuvres; the satellite successfully deployed its antenna reflectors and solar arrays, and final earth pointing has been acquired. All functions of the craft are reported to be performing in accordance with expectations.