Astra 2F

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Astra 2F
Mission type Communications
Operator SES
COSPAR ID 2012-051A
SATCAT no. 38778
Mission duration 15 years
Spacecraft properties
Bus Eurostar E3000
Manufacturer Astrium
(now Airbus Defence and Space)
Start of mission
Launch date September 28, 2012, 21:18:07 (2012-09-28UTC21:18:07Z) UTC
Rocket Ariane 5 ECA V209
Launch site Kourou ELA-3
Contractor Arianespace
Orbital parameters
Reference system Geocentric
Regime Geostationary
Longitude 43.5°E (2012, testing)
28.2° East (2012-)
Slot Astra 28.2°E
Perigee 35,778 kilometres (22,231 mi)[1]
Apogee 35,805 kilometres (22,248 mi)[1]
Inclination 0.02 degrees[1]
Period 1436.05 minutes[1]
Epoch 22 January 2015, 22:20:58 UTC[1]

Astra 2F is one of the Astra communications satellites owned and operated by SES, launched in September 2012 to the Astra 28.2°E orbital slot.[2] The satellite provides free-to-air and encrypted direct-to-home (DTH) digital TV and satellite broadband services for Europe and Africa.

Astra 2F is the first of three ‘second generation’ satellites for the 28.2°E position which replace the first generation Astra 2A, Astra 2B and Astra 2D craft previously there.[3] The second, Astra 2E, was launched in 2013[4] and the third, Astra 2G, was launched in 2014[5] (launched on December 27, 2014[6]). Some parts of the construction of Astra 2F by Astrium (now Airbus Defence and Space) in Stevenage, UK could be seen in the BBC2 documentary programme, How To Build… A Satellite broadcast on November 27, 2011.

Astra 2F was successfully launched from Kourou in French Guiana on September 28, 2012.[7] and underwent in-orbit testing at 43.5°E.[8] Commercial operations at 28.2°E began on November 21, 2012.[9]


The Astra 28.2°E position was established in 1998 to provide digital TV, digital radio and multimedia services to the UK and Republic of Ireland, and Astra 2F’s primary mission is to continue this provision as replacement and follow-on capacity to the Astra 2A, Astra 2B, Astra 2D and Astra 1N satellites, delivering programming to almost 13 million satellite homes, over 3 million cable homes, and 700,000 IPTV homes in the UK and Ireland, in particular for channels from the major UK digital satellite TV platforms, BSkyB and Freesat.[10]

In addition, Astra 2F serves the growing DTH platforms in West Africa such as Ghana’s MultiTV.

Astra 2F is also designed to provide SES Broadband’s first commercial Ka-band satellite broadband service in Europe, with a Ka-band payload delivering high-speed Internet access (at download speeds up to 20Mbit/s) along with VoIP, and IPTV from November 2012.

Broadcasting footprint[edit]

Astra 2F has three Ku-band downlink beams covering Europe and Africa. The Europe beam is centred on the English Channel with maximum signal (for reception on a 40 cm dish) over the UK, Ireland, France, Benelux, and parts of Germany, Austria, and Spain (including a "lobe" specifically designed to serve the Canary Islands which officially requires a 120 cm dish but in practise is easily receivable using a 90 cm dish as with Astra 2E), and reception on a 1m dish extending to North Africa, Poland and the Balkans.

The UK Spot beam provides maximum signal (40 cm dishes) over the UK, Ireland, Benelux and Northern France in close approximation of the UK Beam of Astra 2D, which it replaces.[11] Due to the tight footprint, some reception issues for UK channels are being reported in Spain as of December 2012. Early reports of test transmissions on 11.023 GHz H 23000 DVB-S2 suggest the beam is very tight with a very sharp fall off to the west and east of the footprint, but eastern Spain seems to be getting a higher signal strength possibly due to the off-axis beam as 28.2°E on the geostationary arc is not directly in line with the UK but offset to the east.[citation needed]

The West Africa beam provides for reception with 60 cm dishes across southern West Africa from Senegal to Nigeria, with a lower signal level (80 cm dishes) extending across the Democratic Republic of Congo.[12]

The Ka-band footprint for satellite broadband provides full service coverage across western Europe from the UK and France in the west to Czech Republic, Austria, Croatia and Boznia Herzegovina in the east.[13]

Active Transponders[edit]

Below is a list of the TV channels broadcast to Europe from active transponders on Astra 2F as of September 2018:[14]

In the list, channels broadcast with a one-hour delay are shown Channel +1hr. Where both the original and the delayed channel are broadcast from the same transponder, this is shown in one entry as Channel [also +1hr].

UK Beam Tp109 11.306 GHz H 27500 5/6 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • E! Ireland
  • E! UK
  • Movies 24 [also +1hr]
  • Motorsport TV UK (unencrypted)
  • S4C HD (unencrypted)
  • Syfy [also +1hr]
  • Universal TV UK [also +1hr]
  • Universal TV Ireland

Tp110 11.306 GHz V 27500 5/6:

  • Chart Show Hits
  • Chart Show TV
  • Pop [also +1hr]
  • Pop Max [also +1hr]
  • Scuzz
  • Sony Crime Channel [also +1hr]
  • Sony Crime Channel 2
  • Starz
  • The Vault
  • Tiny Pop [also +1hr]
  • True ENtertainment [also +1hr]
  • True TV UK [also +1hr]
  • True Movies [also +1hr]

Tp111 11.344 GHz H 27500 5/6 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • At The Races Ireland
  • Box Nation
  • BT Sport 2, Extra 2-6
  • BT Sport ESPN
  • BT Sport mosaic
  • Movies4Men
  • ParamouDetwork UK (unencrypted)
  • Psychic Today (unencrypted)

Tp112 11.344 GHz V 27500 5/6:

  • AMC UK (encrypted in Videoguard)
  • BT Sport 1 (encrypted in Videoguard)
  • BT Sport 3 (encrypted in Videoguard)
  • BT Sport Extra 1 (encrypted in Videoguard)
  • BT Sport Mosaic (encrypted in Videoguard)
  • CBS Action
  • CBS Drama
  • CBS Reality [also +1hr]
  • High Street TV 3
  • Horror Channel UK [also +1hr]
  • Movies4Men +1hr
  • S4C
  • YourTV

Tp31 12.304 GHz H 27500 5/6:

  • Box Hits
  • Box Upfront
  • Channel 4 Midlands +1hr
  • Channel 4 Northern Ireland +1hr
  • Kerrang!
  • Kiss TV
  • Magic TV
  • The Box UK
  • 4Music

European Beam

Tp2 11.739 GHz V 29500 8/9 DVB-S2 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Dave HD
  • E! HD
  • Sky On Demand HD 3
  • Syfy HD
  • TG4 HD
  • Universal TV HD
  • Zee TV HD

Tp21 12.110 GHz H 27500 5/6 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Cartoonito
  • Comedy Central
  • Comedy Central Extra
  • Fox
  • Lifetime +1hr
  • Nick Jr
  • Sky Arts
  • Sky Cinema Hits
  • Sky Witness Ireland [also +1hr]
  • Sky 1 [also +1hr]
  • Sky Sports Action
  • Sky Sports Arena
  • Sky Sports F1
  • Sky Sports Main Event
  • Sky Sports Premier League
  • Virgin Media One

Tp22 12.129 GHz V 27500 2/3 DVB-S (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Alibi
  • Dave (unencrypted)
  • Drama UK, Ireland (unencrypted)
  • Eden
  • Good Food Channel
  • Home (unencrypted)
  • Really UK, Ireland (unencrypted)
  • W
  • Yesterday (unencrypted)

Tp23 12.148 GHz H 27500 5/6 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • British Eurosport 1, 2
  • Fox +1hr
  • Nickelodeon UK [also +1hr]
  • Pick Ireland (unencrypted)
  • Sky Atlantic Ireland
  • Sky Atlantic UK [also +1hr]
  • Sky News Arabia (unencrypted)
  • Sky Sports Football UK
  • Sky Sports Golf UK
  • Sky Sports Main Event Ireland
  • Sky Sports News Ireland
  • Sky Sports News UK
  • Sky Witness UK +1hr
  • TCM UK

Tp24 12.168 GHz V 29500 8/9 DVB-S2 (encrypted in Videoguard): Animal Planet Europe HD Boomerang UK HD

  • Sky Movies Comedy HD
  • Sky Movies Disney HD
  • Sky Movies Drama & Romance HD
  • Sky Movies Greats HD
  • Sky Movies Sci-Fi & Horror HD

Tp25 12.188 GHz H 29500 8/9 DVB-S2 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Discovery Channel UK HD
  • Fox UK HD
  • Sky Arts HD
  • Sky Atlantic UK HD
  • Sky Cinema Hits HD
  • Sky News UK HD
  • Sky One UK HD
  • Sky Sports Box Office HD
  • Sky Witness UK HD

Tp26 12.207 GHz V 27500 6/6 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Pick [also +1hr] (unencrypted)
  • Lifetime UK
  • MTV Beats
  • NickToons UK
  • Sky News (unencrypted)
  • Sky News Ireland (unencrypted)
  • Sky One Ireland
  • Sky Sports Cricket
  • Sky Sports Football Ireland
  • Sky Sports Mix
  • Sky Sports Premier League Ireland
  • Sky Two Ireland
  • Sky Two UK
  • Sky Witness UK
  • Together
  • Virgin Media Three

Tp27 12.226 GHz H 29500 8/9 DVB-S2 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Cartoon Network HD
  • Disney Channel HD
  • Disney Junior HD
  • Good Food HD
  • Sony Max UK HD
  • TCM HD
  • Virgin Media One HD
  • W UK HD

Tp28 12.246 GHz V 29500 8/9 DVB-S2 (encrypted in Videoguard):

  • Crime & Investigation HD
  • History HD
  • Nat Geo Wild HD
  • RTÉ One HD
  • RTÉ 2 HD
  • SET Asia HD
  • Sky Cinema Action & Adventure HD
  • Star Plus UK HD

Tp45 11.778 GHz H 22000 1/2:

  • Free Radio Herefordshire and Worcestershire

Tp47 11.778 GHz H 22000 1/2:

  • BBC Hereford and Worcester

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "ASTRA 2F Satellite details 2012-051A NORAD 38778". N2YO. 22 January 2015. Retrieved 25 January 2015. 
  2. ^ "SES SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES ASTRA 2F SATELLITE" (Press release). SES. October 1, 2012. Retrieved October 1, 2012. 
  3. ^ Bains, Geoff. "The Good Die Young" What Satellite & Digital TV Summer 2012 pp29
  4. ^ "ASTRA 2E successfully launched" (Press release). SES. September 30, 2013. Retrieved December 31, 2013. 
  5. ^ "SES Orders Four New Satellites From ASTRIUM" (Press release). SES. 30 November 2009. Retrieved August 28, 2012. 
  6. ^ "ASTRA 2G SATELLITE ROARS INTO ORBIT" (Press release). SES. November 28, 2014. Retrieved January 1, 2015. 
  7. ^ "SES SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHES ASTRA 2F SATELLITE" (Press release). SES. October 1, 2012. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  8. ^ Astra 2F Testing Reception Reports,, retrieved December 27, 2012 
  9. ^ "SES' ASTRA 2F SATELLITE STARTS OPERATIONS" (Press release). SES. November 21, 2012. Retrieved December 27, 2012. 
  10. ^ ASTRA 2F arrives at the Guiana Space Centre, Kourou August 23, 2012 SES blog. Accessed August 26, 2012
  11. ^ Bains, Geoff. "Flight of the Big Birds" What Satellite & Digital TV February 2012 pp29
  12. ^ Astra 2F footprints & coverages on Accessed August 29, 2012
  13. ^ Bains, Geoff. "The Astra 2F Bonus" What Satellite & Digital TV June 2012 pp29
  14. ^ "Astra 2F at 28.2°E". LyngSat. Retrieved September 19, 2018. 

External links[edit]