PARIS—The Eutelsat 3D satellite of Eutelsat Communications went into full commercial service this morning at 3° East with all traffic transferred overnight from Eutelsat 3C onto the new satellite. With 33 operational transponders (32 Ku-band transponders of which 15 are 72 MHz and one 108 MHz Ka-band transponder), additional capacity is now available from 3° East to address video, data, telecom and broadband markets in Europe and also in Africa through a new service area.
Eutelsat 3D will operate at 3° East until the deployment of the Eutelsat 3B satellite to this position in second quarter 2014 to provide further spectrum growth and high levels of operational flexibility in C-, Ku- and Ka- bands. The entry into service of Eutelsat 3D enables Eutelsat to initiate enhancements to its fleet that will bring higher in-orbit security and increased capacity.
Eutelsat 3C will be deployed in early July from 3° East to the Hot Bird position at 13° East. Renamed Hot Bird 13D, it will be colocated with the identical Hot Bird 13B and C satellites. With each bird equipped with 64 high-power Ku-band transponders, they together span the range of 102 Ku-band frequencies at 13° East and will deliver 100 percent in-orbit redundancy.
The reconfiguration of the Hot Bird constellation will release the Hot Bird 13A satellite which will be deployed to 7/8° West. Renamed Eutelsat 8 West C, it will enable Eutelsat to switch on additional transponders at the key neighbourhood for satellite television in North Africa and the Middle East. The 7/8° West arc, already hosting Eutelsat and Nilesat satellites, broadcasts over 1,000 channels to more than 30 million homes and represents one of the fastest growing neighbourhoods for digital services. This orbital position will get a further boost in the second half of 2015 with the launch of Eutelsat 8 West B.