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Cable Technology Feature Article

March 23, 2010

EchoStar XIV to Improve HD Services for DTH Subscribers

By Mini Swamy, TMCnet Contributor

Space Systems/Loral, which designs and builds satellites and spacecraft systems for commercial and government customers around the world, announced that a satellite it delivered to DISH Network L.L.C. is performing post-launch maneuvers according to plan.

Following the launch, which took place on a Saturday, it appears that the satellite had successfully deployed its solar arrays late that night and early Sunday morning. Subsequently, prior to start maneuvering into a geosynchronous orbit, it is said to have fired its main thruster.

“Echo Star XIV is a very powerful and complex satellite,' John Celli, president of Space Systems/Loral., said, adding that many people around the world depended on the reliability of Space Systems/Loral satellites every day, and its success was always the result of a team effort.

Celli expressed his gratitude to the ILS/Proton, DISH Network and EchoStar teams, and the many suppliers who had worked diligently alongside in an effort to build and successfully launch the exceptional spacecraft.

ILS Proton Breeze M launch vehicle provided by International Launch Services (News - Alert), launched EchoStar XIV into space from the Baikonur Space Center in Kazakhstan. EchoStar XIV is based on the Space Systems/Loral 1300 space-proven platform, which provides the power and flexibility to support a broad range of applications.

The satellite is slated to become a part of the DISH Network fleet, which provides direct broadcast services over the continental United States, and will also be used to provide expanded HD services to more than 14 million DTH subscribers. By doing so, it will add more flexibility to DISH Network's services.

EchoStar Satellite (News - Alert) Services LLC, a subsidiary of EchoStar Corporation, manages DISH Network's space programs and will begin in-orbit testing of the satellite later. With this launch, Space Systems/Loral now has 61 geostationary satellites currently on orbit.

DISH Network LLC, a subsidiary of DISH Network Corporation provides more than 14.1 million satellite TV customers, as of Dec. 31, 2009, with the highest quality programming and technology at the best value, including the lowest all-digital price nationwide.

Space Systems/Loral, a subsidiary of Loral Space & Communications (News - Alert), has a long history of delivering reliable satellites and spacecraft systems for commercial and government customers around the world. The company works closely with satellite operators to provide spacecraft for a broad range of services including television and radio distribution, digital audio radio, broadband Internet, and mobile communications.

Mini Swamy is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Marisa Torrieri