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Canada: New Telesat Satellite Tapped to Grow HD

Telesat, which says it is now the world's fourth-largest fixed satellite services firm, ramped up its newest DBS service on Oct. 11 with its Nimiq 4 satellite. The latest space bird serving Canada is totally leased to Bell TV, which said it will use Nimiq 4 to grow the number of its HD channels across the country.

Telesat said it was able to launch commercial services on its new satellite only three weeks after its launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan—a feat the Ottawa-based company characterized as an "impressive technical and operational achievement."

Nimiq 4's "payload" consists of 32 active high-power transponders in Ku-band, as well as eight transponders in Ka-band. Telesat said the satellite is currently operating from an orbital post of 82 degrees West. The DBS firm said Nimiq 4 has a "mission life" of up to 15 years.