The latest addition to Telsat Canada’s communications satellite fleet was launched successfully this week.
The Anik G1 rocketed into orbit above the Earth Monday with a payload of 16 transponders operating the extended Ku-band that will be used by Canadian direct broadcast satellite television distributor Shaw Direct.
(The Anik G1 satellite)
In the Inuktitut Inuit language, Anik means “little brother.”
The satellite is located at 107.3 degrees West and also provides a range of communications services including direct-to-home (DTH) video for Canada, X-band for government applications in the Americas and Pacific Ocean region and C-band and Ku-band services in South America, according to Telesat.
(Area covered by Anik G1)
“Anik G1 will add meaningful incremental capacity to Telesat’s fleet that will contribute to our anticipated growth in 2013 and beyond,” said Dan Goldberg, CEO of Telesat in a statement this after the launch. “We are very pleased that a significant portion of the G1’s capacity is pre-sold for 15 years to blue chip customers like Shaw Direct and Astrium Services.”
Astrium is a firm that provides geo-information services and military satellite communications services.
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Aside from its 15 years lease on Anik G1’s transponders, Shaw also uses Telesat’s Anik F1R and Anik F2 satellites. Anik F1 carries most mainstream English-language programming while Anik F2 programming includes French-language shows and high definition TV broadcasts.
Ontario-based space hardware subsystems manufacturer, Com Dev International Ltd. developed the multiplexers and switches on board Anik G1.
“In addition to increasing the number of HD channels to Canadian DTH subscribers, Anik G1 will also double the C-band and Ku-band transponders serving South America from its orbital location,” said Mike Williams, president of Com Dev.
(Telesat’s satellite fleet. Anik G1 is shown in red)
The Anik G1 was built by Space Systems Loral, a Palo-Alto, Calif-based aerospace company bought by Canadian firm MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates Ltd., of Richmond, British Columbia.
The Anik is part of a series of about 15 geostationary communications satellites launched and operated by Telesat beginning with the Anik A1 in 1972.
Some of the later satellites in the series are still in orbit while others have been de-commissioned and are considered derelict satellites orbiting the Earth.