Telstar-18/APSTAR V at 138° East
|Manufacturer:||Space Systems/Loral (SS/L)|
|Operators:||APT Satellite Co.|
|Launch operator:||Sea Launch|
|Launch vehicle:||Zenit 3SL|
|Expected lifetime:||13 Years|
Telesat Canada owns Telstar-18 after the merge with Loral Skynet, a subsidary of Loral Space & Communications, and is leasing capacity to satellite operator APT Satellite and SingTel Singapore that are branding it under APSTAR-5 (APSTAR- V). APSTAR-5 replaced aging APSTAR-1.
Telstar-18/APSTAR-V is a high-powered C/Ku-band hybrid satellite constructed by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L), based on SS/L’s SSL-1300 platform, similar to APSTAR-IIR, which is currently on orbit serving the Asia-Pacific region. Telstar-18/APSTAR-V has total beginning-of-life power of 10.6kW with a separated mass of approximately 4,845 kg, and 9.5 kW of end-of-life power. The new spacecraft operates a total of 54 transponders, 38 in the C-band at 60W, and 16 in the Ku-band at 141W.
Under the new contract, which requires SS/L’s (subsidary of Loral Space & Communications) receipt of the necessary U.S. government export licenses, SS/L will also provide customary pre- and post-launch support-services.
Telstar-18/APSTAR-V was launched on June 24th, 2004 on a Zenit-3SL rocket from the Odyssey launch platform operated by launch operator Sea Launch, with APT procuring the launch vehicle and insurance. Because of export-license difficulties, Loral will own the satellite as Telstar 18 and will lease capacity to satellite operator APT and sub-lease the orbital slot at 138° East longitude over Asia.
The spacecraft did not reach the planned GTO, as the upper stage of the launch vehicle underperformed, reaching an apogee of only 21,000 km instead of 36,000 km. The spacecraft was put into a geostationary orbit by its thrusters, with even enough fuel left to exceed the planned 13 years lifetime.