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Mission typeCommunication
COSPAR ID2005-046A Edit this at Wikidata
SATCAT no.28902
Mission duration12 years (planned)
13 years, 8 months (elapsed)
Spacecraft properties
Launch mass6116 kg
Dry mass3800 kg
Power12.3 kW
Start of mission
Launch date16 November 2005,
23:46:00 UTC
RocketAriane 5ECA
Launch siteKourou, ELA-3
Entered service19 April 2006
Orbital parameters
Reference systemGeocentric orbit
RegimeGeostationary orbit
Longitude99.2° West
Band48 Ka-band transponders
Frequency500 MHz
Coverage areaNorth America

Spaceway-2 [1] is part of DirecTV's constellation of direct broadcast satellites. The satellite was launched via an Arianespace Ariane 5 ECA rocket from Kourou, French Guiana on 16 November 2005. Its operational position is in geosynchronous orbit 35,800 kilometres (22,200 mi) above the equator at 99.2° West longitude. Spaceway-2 is a Boeing 702-model satellite with a 12-year life expectancy. It is expected to support high-definition television to DirecTV customers with its Ka-band communications payload. Although Spaceway-2 was originally built by Boeing to be used for broadband Internet access via Hughes Network Systems, it has been retrofitted to deliver HD local channels (NBC, ABC, CBS, and Fox) to numerous markets nationwide.

On 19 April 2006, the satellite was delivered to DirecTV's control after successful on-orbit testing. Spaceway-2 immediately started broadcasting HD locals to DirecTV customers in eight more markets: Minneapolis, Minnesota; Sacramento and San Diego, California; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Nashville, Tennessee; Kansas City, Missouri; Columbus, Ohio; and Birmingham, Alabama. Satellites named T10 (launched in 2007) and T11 (launched in 2008), constructed by Boeing, also for use in high-definition television, are bent-pipe Ka-band satellites instead of regenerative satellites, and are being used to continue the expansion of DirecTV's HD services.

Spaceway-2 was originally envisioned as a global Ka-band communications system.

Boeing retrofitted the Spaceway-2 satellite for bent-pipe Ka-band communications for use in high-definition television and disabled the regenerative on-board processing of the original system that was to be used for the Spaceway broadband satellite communications.

T11 is co-located with Spaceway-2 satellites in order to use the 500 MHz of unused spectrum for HDTV broadcasting. This spectrum was originally intended for the broadband internet capabilities of the two Spaceway satellites which were disabled by Hughes Network Systems at the request of DirecTV.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Flight 167 Ariane 5 ECA: Spaceway F2 and Telkom 2". EADS Astrium. Archived from the original on 15 July 2010. Retrieved 1 August 2010.

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