|Major contractors||Space Systems Loral
|Carrier rocket||Ariane 5ECA|
|Launch site||Kourou ELA-3|
|Mission duration||15 years|
|Mass||6,910 kilograms (15,200 lb)|
|Orbital period||24 hours|
TerreStar-1 is an American communications satellite which was operated by TerreStar Corporation. It was constructed by Space Systems/Loral, based on the LS-1300S bus, and carries E/F band (IEEE S band) transponders which will be used to provide mobile communications to North America. The signals are transmitted by an 18-metre (59 ft) reflector on the satellite. It had a launch mass of 6,910 kilograms (15,200 lb), making it the most massive single satellite launched into a geosynchronous transfer orbit, and the largest commercial communications satellite ever built at the time of its launch, surpassing the previous two records, both set by ICO G-1 in 2008. Terrestar-1 has since been surpassed in size by the launch of SkyTerra in November 2010, formerly known as Mobile Satellite Ventures.
TerreStar was launched at 17:52 GMT on 2009-07-01, during a two-hour launch window that opened at 16:13. The launch occurred towards the end of the window due to bad weather in the first hour, followed by two aborted countdowns for launch attempts scheduled at 17:12 and 17:34. The launch was conducted by Arianespace, and used an Ariane 5ECA carrier rocket, flying from ELA-3 at the Guiana Space Centre. After launch, the satellite separated from the carrier rocket into a geosynchronous transfer orbit. It will subsequently raise itself into geostationary orbit by means of its onboard propulsion system. It will be positioned at 111° West longitude, and is expected to operate for 15 years. A second satellite, TerreStar-2, is currently under construction and will be used as a ground spare per the Federal Communications Commission guidelines.
Following TerreStar's file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy a movement had been formed by the NGO A Human Right to purchase TerreStar-1 and to use it to provide free basic Internet access to developing countries. The team was looking for $150,000 USD in donations to put the first phase of their plan into action. However after successfully bidding $1.375 billion for the acquisition of the TerreStar-1 satellite in a bankruptcy-court auction Dish Network on August 22, 2011 asked the Federal Communications Commission to let the company use the wireless spectrum of TerreStar to offer its own wireless broadband service.
- Bergin, Chris (2009-07-01). "LIVE: Ariane 5 ECA launches with the giant TerreStar-1 satellite". NASASpaceflight.com. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Krebs, Gunter. "TerreStar 1, 2". Gunter's Space Page. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Integration of Ariane 5 is completed for its upcoming heavy-lift launch with TerreStar-1". Arianespace. 2009-06-26. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "A new generation for mobile satellite communications". Spaceflight Now. 2009-07-01. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Ariane 5 soars to another heavy-lift success in lofting the TerreStar-1 mobile communications satellite". Arianespace. 2009-07-01. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Bankruptcy court OKs Dish Network’s buy of TerreStar". Denver Business Journal. 2011-07-07. Retrieved 2011-12-30.
- "Boeing 787 nears debut". The Sun News. 2011-08-25. Retrieved 2011-08-25.
- TerreStar Corporation
- TerreStar Networks
- NSSDC SPACEWARN Bulletin - TerreStar 1 - 2009-035A
- Buy This Satellite Project
- A Human Right