JCSAT-RA (JCSAT-12) at 169° East
|Operator:||SKY Perfect JSAT|
|Launch vehicle:||Ariane 5ECA|
|Expected lifetime:||15+ Years|
JCSAT-12, was a geostationary communications satellite ordered by JSAT Corporation (part of SKY Perfect JSAT Group) which was designed and manufactured by Lockheed Martin on the A2100 platform. The satellite was designated to be used as in-orbit back-up. JCSAT-12 was a replacement for the lost JCSAT-11, that was destroyed during launch. The satellite was ordered on the same day of the JCSAT-11 launch.
After becoming operational, the JCSAT-12 is referred by the designator JCSAT-RA.
The spacecraft was designed and manufactured by Lockheed Martin on the A2100AX satellite bus. It had a launch mass of 4,007 kg (8,834lb) and a 15-year design life. A near copy of JCSAT-3A, it was to be used as an on-orbit spare. Its payload is composed of eighteen 27MHz and twelve 36 MHz Ku-band plus twelve C-band transponders, for a total bandwidth of 1,350MHz. Its high-power amplifiers had an output power of 127W on Ku-band and 48W on C- band.
The almost 19-year streak of successful JCSAT launches was ended when a Proton-M/Briz-M, operated by launch operator ILS, failed to orbit JCSAT-11 on September 5, 2007. A damaged pyro firing cable on the interstage truss prevented the second stage from controlling its direction, and the rocket and its payload crashed into the Kazakhstan steppes. Being lucky in misfortune, JCSAT-11 was simply an on-orbit backup and thus it had no operational impact on the fleet.
The same day of the launch failure, JSAT placed an order with Lockheed Martin for an identical replacement, JCSAT-12, for launch in 2009. On September 19th, 2007, they closed a deal with launch operator Arianespace for a launch slot with an Ariane 5 for its launch. JCSAT-12 was launched on August 22nd, 2009.