The launch of a Proton launch vehicle with the Sirius FM-6 satellite was postponed today for at least 24 hours due to issues with the satellite ground station network required for the launch and early orbital operations of the Sirius FM-6 spacecraft. Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center (Khrunichev) and International Launch Services (ILS) plan to make another attempt at 12:12 a.m. local time on October 22 in Baikonur (2:12 pm EDT on October 21). The satellite was built for SiriusXM Radio of New York, by SSL of California.
It was determined by SSL and SiriusXM, as a precautionary measure, that additional time was needed to evaluate issues related to required remote satellite ground stations. The Proton Launch Vehicle and Sirius FM-6 satellite remain in a safe configuration with no technical issues at the launch site.
Sirius FM-6 is a high-power geostationary satellite from SiriusXM, America’s largest radio broadcaster measured by revenue and one of the world’s largest pure-play audio entertainment companies. Sirius FM-6 will help with the delivery of commercial-free music, and premier sports, news, talk, entertainment and Latin programming, traffic and weather to more than 25 million subscribers. Sirius FM-6 will also help in the delivery of traffic and other data service information to markets across North America for vehicles with navigational systems.
SiriusXM is installed in vehicles of every major automaker and available for sale at retail locations nationwide. Sirius FM-6 will ensure SiriusXM’s array of audio and data services are received by vehicles, mobile devices and home receivers and will play an important role in bolstering the continuity of service for years to come.
The Proton M launch vehicle, utilizing a 5-burn Breeze M mission design, will lift off from Pad 39 at Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, with the Sirius FM-6 satellite on board. The first three stages of the Proton will use a standard ascent profile to place the orbital unit (Breeze M upper stage and the Sirius FM-6 satellite) into a sub-orbital trajectory. From this point in the mission, the Breeze M will perform planned mission maneuvers to advance the orbital unit first to a circular parking orbit, then to an intermediate orbit, followed by a transfer orbit, and finally to a geostationary transfer orbit. Separation of the Sirius FM-6 satellite is scheduled to occur approximately 9 hours, 11 minutes, and 20 seconds after liftoff.
For updated information, please check the ILS website, http://www.ilslaunch.com.
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