Yahsat, a leading global satellite operator based in the UAE, has confirmed the launch of Al Yah 3, the third satellite in the company’s fleet. The launch is a key milestone in Yahsat’s strategy to expand its Ka-band coverage across Africa and to establish a presence in Latin America.
The mission experienced some challenges during the launch stages, which resulted in the Al Yah 3 satellite being inserted into an orbit that differed from the flight plan. However, the satellite is healthy and operating nominally. A revised flight plan will be executed in order to achieve the operational orbit and fulfill the original mission.
Masood M. Sharif Mahmood, Chief Executive Officer at Yahsat, said: “We are pleased to know that the satellite is healthy, and that the necessary steps are being taken to ensure the original mission is fulfilled. I would like to thank our technology partner Orbital ATK and the Yahsat team in ensuring the Al Yah 3 objectives are met.”
Frank Culbertson, President of Orbital ATK’s Space Systems Group added: “Based on data from initial communications, I can report that Al Yah 3 is in orbit, healthy and responding to commands from our mission operations team. We will continue to work closely with our customer, Yahsat, to meet their mission objectives and remain confident that we will deliver a fully operational satellite to the planned orbit.”
Al Yah 3, an all Ka-band satellite, and the first hybrid electric propulsion GEOStar-3 satellite completed by Orbital ATK, was launched on an Ariane 5 rocket by Arianespace at 22:20 UTC January 25th 2018 from Kourou in French Guiana.
Al Yah 3 will join Al Yah 1 and Al Yah 2 in helping to empower millions of people across the Middle East, Africa, South West Asia and Brazil to access affordable Internet access via Yahsat’s high-speed satellite broadband service, YahClick. The service is designed to provide satellite broadband Internet to everyone, opening up new opportunities for every aspect of society from governments and enterprises to end users at home.
Al Yah 3 will expand Yahsat’s commercial Ka-band coverage to an additional 19 new markets in Africa, reaching 60 percent of the population. Furthermore, Al Yah 3 will serve Brazil, covering over 95% of its population.
Al Yah 3 is due to begin delivering commercial services later in 2018.
Yahsat is a leading global satellite operator, providing multipurpose satellite solutions for broadband, broadcast, government and communications use across the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Central and South West Asia.
Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and wholly owned by Mubadala Investment Company, the investment vehicle of the Government of Abu Dhabi, Yahsat is the first company in the Middle East and Africa to offer Ka-band services including YahClick, Yahsat Government Solutions, YahLink and Yahlive via its Al Yah 1 and Al Yah 2 satellites.
Orbital ATK is a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies. The company designs, builds and delivers space, defense and aviation systems for customers around the world, both as a prime contractor and merchant supplier.
Orbital ATK’s main products include launch vehicles and related propulsion systems; missile products, subsystems and defense electronics; precision weapons, armament systems and ammunition; satellites and associated space components and services; and advanced aerospace structures.
Headquartered in Dulles, Virginia, Orbital ATK employs approximately 13,000 people across the U.S. and in several international locations.