An advanced communication satellite HYLAS (Highly Adaptable Satellite), built by ISRO on a commercial basis in partnership with EADS-Astrium of Europe, was successfully launched today (November 27, 2010) at 00.09 hours Indian Standard Time (IST) by the European Ariane-5 V198 launch vehicle.

According to ISRO's press release, the launch took place from the Guyana Space Centre at Kourou in French Guyana.

Thirty-five minutes after its lift-off, HYLAS separated from Ariane-5 launch vehicle after reaching its intended Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO). ISRO's Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan in Karnataka successfully received radio signals transmitted by HYLAS and the satellite's health is normal.

HYLAS satellite developed for Avanti Communications, UK consists of ten high power transponders that use eight in Ka and two in Ku band frequencies. The satellite is designed to deliver high-speed broadband services through its spot beams over Europe. The satellite is expected to be operated from 33.5 deg. W longitude for European coverage.

The contract for building of satellite was won in the year 2006 after competing along other leading manufacturers of USA and Europe through the strategic alliance worked out between Antrix/ISRO and M/s. EADS Astrium of France. The alliance was formed to jointly develop communication satellites with ISRO platforms and Astrium payloads and market them internationally.

Astrium had the responsibility for overall program management and delivery of the communications payload and Antrix/ISRO provided the satellite bus and also performed the satellite integration and testing at ISRO's facility in Bangalore. HYLAS satellite weighing 2541 kg at lift-off is the heaviest satellite built by ISRO for I-2K bus capable of operating for over 15 years mission life as demanded by the customer. The satellite's solar panels generate a maximum of about 3200 Watts of power.

Antrix/ISRO is also responsible for the post launch operations of HYLAS, which are being conducted from the Master Control Facility, Hassan. The operations include firing of the satellite's Liquid Apogee Motor (LAM) in three phases to place the satellite in geostationary orbit. The first firing of LAM is scheduled for the early hours of November 28, 2010.

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