Satellite footprints

Telstar 11 (Orion-1) at 15° West (Retired)

Position:15° West (Retired)
Manufacturer:Airbus Defense & Space
Operators:Lockheed Martin
Launch operator:Arianespace
Launch vehicle:Atlas 2A
Launch date:11/29/1994
Expected lifetime:13 Years

The Telstar 11 (Orion-1) at 15° West telecommunications satellite was operated by Orion Network Systems, Inc. from USA. The satellite was constructed by Matra Marconi Space (aka EADS Astrium – Airbus Defense & Space), based on their EuroStar-2000 bus, which made it the first satellite purchased of a European satellite by a US-based company.

The satellite had 34 Ku-band transponders serving Europe, the United States to the Rocky Mountains and parts of Canada and Mexico, providing video for broadcast and business television, high-speed Internet access and multimedia services, broadband and data networking. The Orion-1 satellite was equipped with many features which were innovative at the time of its launch and are now to be found as standard on many modern spacecraft;

  • all-solid state power amplifier payload,
  • dual 2.3m Kevlar moulded gridded-shaped reflectors with both single and multiple feed horns,
  • hinge deployment and trimming mechanisms for 2º of movement throughout the life of the satellite.

In 1998 Orion Network Systems, Inc. was acquired by Loral Space & Communications, Inc. and the satellite was integrated into their fleet, operated by Loral Skynet under the new name Telstar 11.

A second satellite named Orion-2, a carbon copy of Orion-1, was originally ordered, but cancelled in 1993. An improved Orion-2 was ordered instead. This order was later cancelled again when Orion merged with Loral Skynet, who opted to procure satellites from their sister company, Space Systems/Loral (SS/L). It was subsequently sold to Eutelsat as a backup satellite who renamed the satellite in Eutelsat-4A in 2012.

The Telstar 11 (Orion-1) at 15° West satellite was successfully launched on November 29st, 1994, on an Atlas IIA rocket, operated by launch operator Lockheed Martin (ULA).

Telstar 11 (Orion-1) at 15° West (Retired)

Orion 1 satellite under construction