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EchoStar 3, 4, 7

EchoStar 3 [Lockheed Martin]

EchoStar 3 was originaly ordered as DBSC 1 by DBSC (Direct Broadcast Satellite Corporation) which merged with a subsidiary of EchoStar in late 1995. The merger was approved by the FCC in August 1996. EchoStar is only authorized to operate 11 transponders from 61.5W but was granted in Mar 1998 a special authorization to use the full frequency space at that location.

Echsostar 4 should have replaced EchoStar 1 at 119W which would then have moved to 148W (where only 24 transponders have been granted to EchoStar). After launch, the satellite has experienced anomalies in connection with solar panel deployment (two of five panels on one solar array have not unfolded). Therfore several transponders are not operational, so EchoStar 4 did not replace EchoStar 1. In Jul 1999 further anomalies with thermal control and fuel systems were reported. Only 16 transponders are reported to be operational. EchoStar has filled for constructive total loss of the satellite, which was insured for $220 million. In Jun 1999 the FCC approved a move request to 110W to allow EchoStar to start broadcasting from there. Earlier the FCC granted to transfer of the 110W licence of MCI to EchoStar. During May 1999, EchoStar IV experienced anomalies affecting transponders, heating systems and the fuel system. In July 1999, additional fuel system anomalies were confirmed. By 31 October 2000, a total of 26 transponders of 44 aboard failed and by 30 June 2002, 38 transponders had failed. Only six transponders were available for use at this time. Currently the satellite functions as an in-orbit spare. In September 2004, the jammed solar array deployed spontaneously.

EchoStar 7 carries 32 Ku-band transponders capable of operating at 120 Watts per channel, which are switchable to 16 transponders capable of operating at 240 Watts per channel. The 4027 kg (8876 lbm) direct broadcast satellite was built by Lockheed Martin using the A2100AX spacecraft bus. Five transponder frequencies may also be used in a spot beam mode for a potential total of 15 spot beams.

EchoStar 3 stopped transmitting in July 2017. In September, it had been recovered and was placed in graveyard orbit 350 km above the geostationary belt.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Communication (Direct Broadcasting)
Operator: Dish Network Corporation (EchoStar)
Contractors: Lockheed Martin
Equipment: 32 Ku-band transponders
Configuration: A2100AX
Propulsion: LEROS-1C
Power: 2 deployable solar arrays, batteries
Lifetime:
Mass: 3674 kg (#3), 3478 kg (#4), 4026 kg (#7)
Orbit: GEO
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
EchoStar 3 (ex DBSC 1) 1997-059A 05.10.1997 CC LC-36B Atlas-2AS
EchoStar 4 1998-028A 07.05.1998 Ba LC-81/23 Proton-K Blok-DM3
EchoStar 7 2002-006A 21.02.2002 CC SLC-36B Atlas-3B-DEC
Further EchoStar missions: