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DOW JONES NEWSWIRES -- BRUSSELS -- Echostar's AMC-15 satellite was launched by a Russian Proton launch vehicle from the Baikonur Cosmodrom. After 6 hours and 55 minutes, the spacecraft separated from the upper stage and was placed into geostationary target orbit

AMC-15 has been optimized to provide both direct-to-home video and broadband services into a single dish. After thorough testing of all on-board systems, AMC-15 will be ready to operate from its intended 105 degrees West orbital position and deliver service to all 50 U.S. states.


"The AMC-15 spacecraft has a very important mission as the first satellite we have committed to EchoStar Communications Corp. (DISH) and its DISH Network satellite TV service."


AMC-15 is expected to reach geosynchronous orbit and its testing orbital location 136 degrees West on October 23rd. At that time, the satellite's solar panels and two communication antennas will be deployed. After thorough testing of all of the on-board systems, AMC-15 will be ready for service in approximately eight weeks.

Full story at:
http://online.wsj.com/article/1,,BT-CO-20041015-000985,00.html?mod=COMPANY
 

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There is another one just like it due to be launched in December too.


BTW: The launch was covered live with a video webcast. Pretty neat.
 

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Any info from E* about the plans for AMC-15. Is it for HD? locals? or what?
 

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It's a replacement for AMC-2... already at 105


It doesn't provide any new capacity, but has better conus coverage, so HD may end up there, which was the original plan. Also there's plans to move some of the 2nd dish local channels to this sat so those channels would be on one dish and comply with the pending laws.
 
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