EchoStar Satellites and Orbital Slots
The Dish Network User's Resource
Dish Network owns or leases capacity on 14 satellites (12/08). Many of those satellites have provided service from more than one slot, as shown in the History of Dish satellites' positions graph.
- 6/5/12: Dish loses license to 148°, moved it to the Past section
- 5/11/12: E*17 (Hughes Jupiter) launch set for June 19 per Satlaunch.Net
- 3/16/12: QuetzSat-1 will go to 45° for Brazil DBS service, moved it from 77° (bird still at its test slot)
- 3/16/12: minor info updates to QuetzSat-1 and E*16
- 2/13/12: E*3 not moving to 68.5°, E*16 launch set for August
On August 30, 2011, EchoStar was awarded a Brazilian satellite license, expected to be received in May 2012, to expand video and data capabilities in South America.
- built by Space Systems/Loral on the SS/L 1300 platform
- Spot beams
- EchoStar plans to lease spectrum from the Mexican entity that will hold license to all 32 transponders
- Dish will lease 24 transponders from EchoStar
- will replace E-VIII in 1Q12
- Launch planned on an ILS Proton for Sep 30, 2011, (had been Aug 18, 2011 then Nov 2011 after being pushed back from 3rd quarter of 2011 (August?)), see ILS Mission Control
- HISTORY: arrives at Baikonur Cosmodrome 8/8/11, launched 9/29/11, arrives at 67.1° for testing 10/12/11, declared ready for service 11/10 (but still at the test slot as of 3/16, expected to be moved before the summer launch of E-XVI)
Carries international channels and HDTV. Requires separate dish or Eastern Arc dish, reception difficult or impossible in a few west coast spots.
What programming is at 61.5W?
Dish Channel Chart 61.5° subset
Dish Network Coverage from 61.5° (jameslong.name site)
- EchoStar XII
- formerly Rainbow 1, purchased from VOOM
- Designed to operate 13 CONUS transponders at 270 watts per channel, or 22 spot beams in a
combination of 135 and 65 watts per channel, currently operated in hybrid mode
- Transponders 23 - 24 used under FCC special temporary authority
- Spot beams on odd transponders 1 - 15 being used for HD locals (old spot beam map) (new spot beam map) (CONUS map)
- Solar array circuit failures preclude Dish from using the full complement of transponders, and the satellite will not be able to operate at remaining capacity over its expected 12-year lifespan if left in hybrid CONUS/spot-beam mode
- EchoStar XV
- Construction by Space Systems/Loral, Inc. began on April 14, 2008
- Owned by Dish which pays a fee to EchoStar depending on the number of frequencies being used
- Provides CONUS DBS service, replacing EchoStar III
- HISTORY: Launch 7/10/10 arrived 61.5° 7/22, test signals seen 8/3
- EchoStar III
- Transmits most transponders 2, 4, 5 - 8, 10, 12 - 14, 16, 20, 22
- Transponders 16, 18, 28, 29 and 32 are out of service
- Dish has applied to the FCC to take over Sky Angel's 8 transponders (6/07), request has been approved (9/07)
- Failures. It can now operate 15 transponders but due to design and licensing limitations is using only 13 of 19 FCC authorized frequencies.
- Dish's lease of E-III terminated in August 2010 when it was replaced by EchoStar XV.
- May move to one of the Brazilian slots (request to relocate to 68.5° was withdrawn 2/1/12)
- Currently an in-orbit spare
On August 30, 2011, EchoStar was awarded a Brazilian satellite license to expand video and data capabilities in South America.
EchoStar has entered into an agreement to lease 16 transponders from Bell ExpressVu (source)
Dish Channel Chart 72.7° subset
- Nimiq 5
- BSS, Space Systems/Loral 1300 Spacecraft Bus
- Each TP can be aimed at Canada or the US
- Expected to launch second half of 2009, set for September 18 (9/17 in USA time zones) for activation around Oct 1, will test at 82° (arrived 9/30)
- Track the launch progress at MISSION CONTROL: Nimiq 5
- Dish will lease all 32 transponders for 15 years (before launch was 16 transponders for 10 years)
- 29 transponders being used as of 9/2011, the remaining 3 will be added after 1/1/12 after DirecTV relinques use of their 72.5° slot
- HISTORY: Launch 9/17/09, arrives 82° for testing 9/30, on the move 10/6, arrives 72.7° 10/8 (?), signal detected 10/13, live on 10/15
Use of the slot is divided, with 24 transponders for Dish and 8 for Dish Mexico.
Dish Channel Chart 77° subset
- EchoStar I
- Only transmits the odd numbered transponders 1 - 31
- Was launched Dec 1995. Owned by Dish, some capacity leased to EchoStar.
- EchoStar has applied to move E*1 from 148° to replace E*4 for greater capacity and improved CONUS coverage
- HISTORY: first service in 1996 from 119°, began move from 148° on 6/29/09, arrived 77.15° on 8/21/09
- EchoStar VI
- CONUS transponders 3, 7, 13, 22, 23, 24, 26, 27, 29
- Loss of solar arrays limits output to 25 standard or 12 high-power transponders, expected to decline by one transponder every 3 years
- Failures Loss of 2 traveling wave tube amplifiers in 1Q12 brings total loss to 5.
- STA request to move to 77° withdrawn 4/14/08
- EchoStar has applied to the FCC to use E*6 under Canadian license until Nimiq 5 is in place
- Will initially use odd transponders
- All programming transferred to Nimiq 5 at 72.7°on 10/15/09, an announced plans for its future
- HISTORY: Launched 7/14/00 from Cape Canaveral, FL; arrived at 77° on 2/15/11
- EchoStar VIII
- Inactive spare status
- CONUS transponders 1, 5, 7, 9, 11, 12, 14 - 21
- Spot beam transponders 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 (coverage map)
- Data Sheet (SPACE and TECH)
- Photo (AVRev.com)
- Will be moving to 76.85° (12-19-11)
- Dish has requested extension of Special Temporary Authority to move to 77°, now expected to arrive in early Nov 2008.
- Coverage map is on page 11 of the pdf
- Dish has received STA to operate E*8 at 77° for 180 days as of Oct 31, 2008, first uplink sent Nov 6
- Will carry HD LIL and national channels
- Failures: Outage on the morning of 1-30-11 from an electrical disruption to some components which also took out one of the two on-board control computers
- HISTORY: first used at 110°; service at 77° began 11/6/08
Dish will lease capacity to Sprint Nextel for their Emergency Response Team (ERT) and Engineering Sales Support (ESS) programs (source). Also used for the ViP-TV by EchoStar all-MPEG4 delivery to MDU systems, and by XStreamHD. Other programming is yet to be announced.
- SES AMERICOM AMC-16
- 24 Ku-band FSS transponders that operate at approximately 120 watts per channel and a Ka-band payload consisting of 12 spot beams
- Solar-power anomalies in 3/2010 and 1Q12 caused a power loss that reduced its capacity
The last channels which were a test channel and the EPG were shut down 6/24/08. Was initially expected to carry HDTV channels but that plan was scrapped when it was discovered AMC-2 (in service 10/14/03 - 7/2/05) didn't quite have a full CONUS footprint.
Not receivable by the 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, JVC-IRR, DISHPlayer 7100/7200.
Dish Channel Chart 105° subset
- from SES AMERICOM on long-term lease
- 24 Ku FSS transponders that operate at approximately 120 watts per channel and a Ka FSS payload consisting of 12 spot beams, linear polarization
- Reception requires the 66cm 105 SuperDISH (prototype photo) that will see 105°/110°/119°.
- EchoStar Satellite Services has leased Ka-band capacity to WildBlue for added bandwidth to broadband customers in TX, LA, MS, AL, TN, KY, GA and AR beginning 8/9/09. Press release
- Failures: During 2011, AMC-15 experienced solar-power anomalies, which caused a power loss that reduced its capacity.
- HISTORY: Launched 10/14/04, placed into service 6/05.
Carries the video channels of AT250, extra premium channels, locals, HDTV. Viewable with Dish500. EchoStar 8 and EchoStar 10 share the work load.
Dish Channel Chart 110° subset
- EchoStar X
- More spot beams than EchoStar 8
- CONUS transponders: none.
- Spot beam transponders 4, 12, 18, 20, 23, 25, 26, 27, 29, 31.
- Frequency re-use into 49 spots yields an effective equivalence of 132 transponders.
- Arrived about Apr 3, 2006 for testing, Dish started lighting up transponders late Apr 10.
- Anomoly: lost a solar array circuit in Jan 2008, needs 22 for full power, still has 23
- Coverage maps
- Owned by Dish
- EchoStar XI
- Full CONUS
- Spot beams: none
- Improved coverage to Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands
- To be launched July 17, 2008 (update from late 2007 and 6/08)
- Placed into service 8/27/08
- Failures: Solar array anomoly in 1Q12 not expected to impact life or operations but reduces reserves
- Photos: Pre-launch
- Replaces E-VIII and E-VI which will be moved to unknown slots
- Owned by Dish
There are conflicting reports about the source of transponders 25 and 31.
Transponders 28, 30 and 32 belong to DirecTV and come from their satellite.
FSS Ku-Band, circular polarization. Programming includes expanded HD local-into-local and international programming. Reception requires a Plus dish, aka 500+ or 1000+, which has a dual-band LNB for 118.75° and 119°.
Not receivable by the 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, JVC-IRR, DISHPlayer 7100/7200. The slot is identified as 119K by the 2800, 6000, and 721.
Dish Channel Chart 118.75° subset
- SES AMERICOM AMC-16
- temporarily handled the duties (on loan from 85°) until...
- Telesat Anik F3
- scheduled for launch 3Q06 (Story, SkyREPORT), delayed until March or April 2007. Launch occurred 4/9/07, placed in service on 4/30/07.
- Equipped with 32 Ku-band transponders, 24 C-band transponders and a small Ka-band payload
- Dish has leased all of the Ku-band capacity on Anik F3 for a period of 15 years
Carries AT100, most of AT200, audio channels (mono and CD), locals, distant nets. Viewable with Dish500. Actual placement is 118.9°.
Dish Channel Chart 119° subset
- EchoStar VII
- CONUS transponders 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11 - 21 (coverage map)
- Spot beam transponders 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 can transmit over 15 spot beams (coverage map)
- During 2006 lost an uplink receiver. If the spare fails, Dish would lose one-fifth of the spot beam capacity when operating in spot beam mode.
- As of 1/2012 it is an in-orbit spare with a projected end of life, based upon the remaining fuel and projected operational parameters, of May 2022.
- Owned by Dish
- EchoStar XIV
- Expected to be placed in service around the first of June 2010. This satellite has been designed with a combination of CONUS and spot beam
capacity and could be used at multiple orbital locations. The satellite is capable of operating all of
its channels on a large “CONUS+” downlink beam that serves the United States including Alaska and Hawaii, and the Caribbean.
Certain channels can use 114 transponders on 51 spot beams.
- Space Systems/Loral 1300, mass 6379 kg, design life 15 years
- CONUS transponders 12, 14 - 32
- Spot beam transponders 1-11, 13 (1-5 in use at launch)
- Failures: Solar array anomolies in 9/2011 and 1Q12 not expected to impact life or operations but reduces reserves
- Maps: CONUS, national spot beam, individual spot beams (SatelliteGuys.US)
- HISTORY: Launch 3/20/10, arrived 138.5° for testing 3/30, began drift to 119° on 5/1, arrived 119° on 5/18
Transponders 22 - 32 belong to DirecTV and their satellites are taking care of those.
FSS Ku-Band, linear polarization. Currently no subscriber channels, had carried local channels and mirrored nearly all the international channels at 61.5° and 148°, also used for testing of future broadband service. Placed into service 11/19/03.
Not receivable by the 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, JVC-IRR, DISHPlayer 7100/7200.
Dish Channel Chart 121° subset
- EchoStar IX
- 32 FSS transponders in CONUS at approximately 110 watts per channel
- a “Ka-band payload”
- C-band payload which is owned by a third party
- Reception requires the 66cm 121 SuperDISH (prototype photo) that will see 110°/119°/121°.
Carries must-carry locals and HDTV. Channel 9901, “Welcome, you have a Dish 1000” became active 9/1/05. Reception is from the Dish1000 or a separate dish.
Not receivable by the 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, JVC-IRR, DISHPlayer 7100/7200
Dish Channel Chart 129° subset
- Ciel II
- Built by Thales Alenia Space for Ciel Satellite, to be launched by SES Americom
- Track launch status at Ciel II Mission Control
- Transponders 1-17 can deliver 145 spot beams - details (jameslong.name site)
- Transponders 18-32 are CONUS or Canada only
- TP 17 can be spot or CONUS )coverage maps)
- Expected to serve 100 HD locals
- Largest Spacebus class spacecraft ever built
- Launched Dec 10, 2008 after being delayed until 1Q09 then Nov 2008
- Should be in service early February 2009 (first channels lit up on 2/3), expected service life of 15 years
From 1/02(?) - 10/03 EchoStar transmitted the “minor” Philadelphia locals from leased transponder 17 on Telstar 7 (renamed Galaxy 27 on 2-1-07). These moved to 61.5° but are now on 110°.
Slot has been vacated with the move of E-IV to 77°. Subscriber impact is nearly non-existent as the only channels that had been carried were mirrors of a few locals on 110° and 119° and were not promoted. EchoStar stands to lose the transponders it owns if it doesn't place a satellite back here to utilize them.
Dish Channel Chart 157° subset
The FCC on 5/4/07 issued a Report and Order for BSS Band (17/24GHz). EchoStar has 10 requests before the FCC: 119°, 114.5°, and 110°; and 61.9°, 67°, 77.2°, 86.3°,
124°, 128.6°, and 147.6°. Dish has narrowed their requests to 5 per an FCC rule to 61.9, 77.2, 110, 114.5 and 119 W.
On Dec 30, 2009, Space Systems/Loral announced it had been selected to provide EchoStar XVI, based on the space-proven SS/L 1300 satellite bus, for launch in Aug 2012 (was 4Q12). Will be a spot beam satellite going to 61.5° (after a stop for testing at 67.1°), with 16 of the 32 transponders able to be used across 71 spot beams including 5 for the Puerto Rico beam. A 60-day Special Temporary Authority has been requested to allow for launch, testing and location beginning July 20.
DBS Expansion Band
EchoStar has applied for authority to operate a Direct Broadcast Satellite (“DBS”) system composed of a total of ten satellites using the 17/24GHz Broadcast-Satellite Service1 (“BSS”) frequency bands (“DBS Expansion Band”) into the orbital locations at 61.9°, 67º, 77.2°, 86.3º, 124º, 128.6º, and 147.6º, respectively, assuming a 4.5° spacing plus or minus a separation distance of up to 0.4 degrees between each satellite. EchoStar has also already filed applications to operate DBS Expansion Band satellites
at 110º W.L., 114.5º W.L., and 119º.
All slots but 67° and 124° are close enough to existing slots to be picked up by a single antenna (that might mean a dual-band LNB similar in concept to the Plus dish). The slots will be used for HDTV, added niche and international services, and expanded coverage into Mexico.
EchoStar has been granted authority to launch a 17/24 GHz Broadcasting-Satellite Service (BSS) satellite at 79°. Construction is to start by 4/2012 with launch by 4/2014, with a 15-year license term once in service.
EchoStar has been granted authority to launch a 17/24 GHz Broadcasting-Satellite Service (BSS) satellite at 75°. Construction is to start by 3/2012 with launch by 3/2014, with a 15-year license term once in service.
EchoStar has leased the full capacity of this DBS tweener slot from SES pending FCC approval. Unknown if this will be for residential or commercial use. No satellite has been named but was originally to have been AMC-14.
Dish has an approved application to build an Extended Ku-Band satellite (12-12-05). See the application at http://svartifoss2.fcc.gov/servlet/ib.page.FetchAttachment?attachment_key=473205 (requires Acrobat Reader).
EchoStar filed an FCC application for authority to construct, launch and operate a satellite in the fixed-satellite service (FSS) using Ka-Band frequencies. The company proposed to offer DTH services, two-way broadband, interactive capabilities and HD content. (Quoted from SkyREPORT)
- launched Sept 1996
- only transmits even numbered transponders 2 - 32
- was at 148°, died 7/14/08 as it was being prepared for move to 77°
- Had moved from 119° to the 157° position to provide service from 3 transponders. This satellite suffered a failure after launch - its solar panels did not fully deploy. Dish is pursuing an insurance claim for the loss.
- Can only transmit on 6 transponders
- Will operate at 77.15° after arrival of E-VIII
- Fuel expected to run out sometime in 1Q09
- During 3Q11, EchoStar IV was removed from the 77° orbital location and retired from commercial service.
The FCC has authorized Dish to build, but not yet launch, a new DBS satellite for this “tweener” slot. May carry HDTV, international, and LIL. (source). Use of the slot has been revoked for failure to perform per the license (source).
- Opposite circular polarization from standard slot DBS satellites
EchoStar filed an amendment to an FCC application to construct, launch and operate a FSS/Ka-Band spot-beam satellite (Quoted from SkyREPORT) The application has lapsed and DirecTV has filed an application for its use.
EchoStar obtained control of the Ka-Band slot from VisionStar in Oct 2001. The FCC put the frequencies up for reassignment after declaring VisionStar out of compliance with the licence's construction milestones. EchoStar has re-filed for access to the slot, wants to use it for delivery of video services, including more local TV and high-def channels, two-way broadband, transport of programming to uplink centers, and delivery of international satellite TV services. (SkyREPORT)
Construction of “EchoStar-113” has begun and launch is expected in the fall of 2009.
On Sept 2, 2009 EchoStar surrendered its Ka-band authorization to provide service from 113°.
Carried international channels, minor locals for western markets, some entire local markets. Almost a mirror of 61.5°. Requires separate dish.
Dish Channel Chart 148° subset
There is no satellite at this slot as of 8/3/09. On 5/31/12, the International Bureau of the FCC announced the termination of Dish's license for use of the 148 degree orbital location.
Hughes Broadband Satellite
In June 2009, Hughes Communications entered into an agreement with Space Systems/Loral, Inc. (“SS/L”) for the design and manufacture of a next-generation, high throughput geostationary satellite (“Jupiter”).
Jupiter will employ a multi-spot beam, bent pipe Ka-band architecture and will provide additional capacity for HughesNet service to the consumer market in North America. Jupiter is expected to be launched during the first half of 2012.
Barrett Xplore Inc. has agreed to lease the user beams designed to operate in Canada, which represents a portion of the capacity available on the Jupiter satellite.
Design/Construct/Launch FCC application filed August 2011. - 3-5 years to launch
Design/Construct/Launch FCC application filed December 2011 - 3-5 years to launch
Design/Construct/Launch FCC applicaiton filed December 2011 - 3-5 years to launch
- EchoStar G1
- Launched in April 2008 by DBSD North America and currently located at the 92.85° orbital location. EchoStar G1 was designed to meet a minimum 15-year useful life.
- EchoStar T1
- Launched in July 2009 by TerreStar and currently operates at the 111.1° orbital location. EchoStar T1 was designed to meet a minimum 15-year useful life. Prior to the TerreStar Transaction, this satellite experienced certain solar array anomalies. While these anomalies did not reduce the estimated useful life of the satellite to less than 15 years or impact commercial operation of the satellite, there can be no assurance that future anomalies will not reduce its useful life or impact its commercial operation.
- EchoStar T2
- In December 2007, TerreStar entered into an agreement with Space Systems/Loral, Inc. (“SS/L”) for the design and manufacture of EchoStar T2 which is expected to be completed during 2012.
Thanks to TNGTony for compiling much of the information. Have a correction or addition? E-mail the Editor