Paris-based satellite communications company Eutelsat’s W3A, launched by a Proton rocket in March 2004, is the first Eurostar E3000 spacecraft to orbit, and the first commercial satellite equipped with highly efficient Lithium-Ion batteries. From its 7°East orbit location, it provides a full range of telecommunications applications including digital DVB broadcasting, multimedia, broadband access and pay-per-use bandwidth for corporate networks over a large zone covering Europe and Africa. The spacecraft had a launch mass of 4,250kg, its solar array span is 35 metres deployed in orbit, and spacecraft power is 9.6kW at end of life. The payload allows enhanced operational flexibility compared to previous generations of communications satellites, as well as multiple regional coverage for regional or intra-regional connectivity.
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