T12 (satellite)

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Mission typeCommunications
OperatorAT&T Communications
COSPAR ID2009-075A
SATCAT no.36131
Mission duration15 years
Spacecraft properties
Start of mission
Launch dateDecember 29, 2009, 00:22:00 (2009-12-29UTC00:22Z) UTC[1]
Launch siteBaikonur 200/39
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric
Longitude76° West (testing)
103.0° West (current)
Perigee altitude35,791 kilometers (22,239 mi)[2]
Apogee altitude35,795 kilometers (22,242 mi)[2]
Inclination0.04 degrees[2]
Period1436.12 minutes[2]
EpochJanuary 24, 2015, 09:34:01 UTC[2]
Band500 MHz

T12, formerly known as D12, is a Boeing model 702 satellite built by the Boeing Satellite Development Center. It was launched on December 29, 2009 and became operational on May 19, 2010. It is used by DirecTV to provide additional high definition channels and Video on demand content, as well as 3DTV channels and content. The satellite adopted its current name in 2017.[3]


This satellite is similar to T10 and T11, but features a 17/24 GHz BSS payload carrying the moniker RB-2A.[4] It is co-located with SPACEWAY-1 and T10 very near 103.0°W.[5]

Launch data[edit]

On November 27, the satellite was shipped to the Baikonur Cosmodrome in the Kazakhstan desert from the Boeing facility in El Segundo, California.[6][7][8]

T12 was launched successfully by International Launch Services on December 29, 2009 at 6:22 AM Kahzakstan time (00:22 UTC) [9] from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan aboard an Enhanced Proton Breeze-M rocket. The launch was televised publicly live on DirecTV channel 577, on C-Band satellite, and online at ILS's website.[10]

Testing stage[edit]

T12 reached 76° W on February 11, 2010 and began testing 2 days later. After 3 weeks of scheduled testing, RB-2A began being tested. On April 23, T12 was granted a Special Temporary Authority to continue testing at 76° W for 30 more days.[11] Testing was completed in late April.

Drift to final position[edit]

On March 31, 2010 DirecTV filed a Special Temporary Authority for permission to drift to its final position at 103° W.[12] It was granted on April 23.[13] It reached its final position on May 11 and began operations on May 13.[14] Boeing handed the satellite over to DirecTV on May 17.[15]

Broadcasting to customers[edit]

T12 increased DirecTV's national HD channel capacity to over 200 channels and expanded its availability of local channels in HD. DirecTV has used the new satellite to add more HD channels, expand its pay-per-view movie service "DirecTV Cinema" and on demand titles.[16] It also carries 3DTV channels. DirecTV began adding new HD channels on May 19 and continued June 23 and later in the summer. DirecTV added the first 3D channel to T12, ESPN 3D, on June 11, and new channels n3D and a pay-per-view 3D movie channel on July 1. A few more HD channels were added onto it in the fall of 2010, the winter of 2010-11, and the spring and summer of 2011; and more in 2012.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ McDowell, Jonathan. "Launch Log". Jonathan's Space Page. Retrieved January 22, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e "DIRECTV 12 Satellite details 2009-075A NORAD 36131". N2YO. January 24, 2015. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  3. ^ https://licensing.fcc.gov/myibfs/download.do?attachment_key=1236818
  4. ^ http://licensing.fcc.gov/ibfsweb/ib.page.FetchAttachment?attachment_key=-173006
  5. ^ http://www.lyngsat.com/Spaceway-1-and-DirecTV-10-12.html
  6. ^ "The Boeing — Baikonur Connection For DIRECTV 12". Satnews Daily. December 2, 2009.
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 28, 2010. Retrieved 2008-08-17.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ Russia prepares for December launch of DirecTV satellite
  9. ^ DIRECTV HD and Movie Choices to Get a Lift With Successful Satellite Launch DIRECTV 12 Boosts Satellite Fleet's Capacity to More Than 200 HD Channels; Begins Operation First Half of Next Year Archived January 2, 2010, at the Wayback Machine DirecTV Press Release December 29, 2009
  10. ^ ILS Official Site - Media Advisory Archived October 10, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ FCC STA for testing at 76 W April 23
  12. ^ Application for drift to 103 W March 31, 2010
  13. ^ FCC STA for Drift April 23
  14. ^ DirecTV notice to FCC of commencement of operations of D12
  15. ^ Boeing Completes On-Orbit of DirecTV 12 Satellite Boeing.com May 17, 2010
  16. ^ DirecTV Using A Window Of Opportunity Archived January 26, 2013, at Archive.today Investors.com July 1, 2010