Just a quick piece of sad news. SES Americom reported that its AMC-14 satellite failed to reach its orbit on Saturday after it was launched by a Russian Proton Breeze-M rocket. Despite the failure, though, there might be hope that the satellite will be broadcasting HD television eventually.
The company said that the problem happened during the second burn of the fourth stage, and resulted in the satellite – built by Lockheed Martin – not reaching its geostationary transfer orbit.
With this failure, the company has suspended plans to ship the next satellite to the launch site, and its April launch will be postponed until a thorough investigation can be done. Dish Network was originally planning to lease the entire capacity of the satellite to increase the number of high-definition television channels that it broadcasts. They were planning to launch three new satellites in 2008.
It’s not a hopeless situation, however. SES Americom president Edward Horowitz said he’s working with Lockheed Martin engineers to figure out a way to get AMC-14 back into its correct orbit. The downside is that the fuel used to get the satellite into its proper orbit will shorten its broadcast lifetime, since it’ll have less fuel for station keeping.
Original Source: SES Americom News Release