Palapa D

[on the image: Palapa-A]

[from Jonathan’s Space Report No 615]

Indosat’s Palapa D satellite was launched by a Chinese Chang Zheng 3B rocket on Aug 31. The CZ-3B reached a low parking orbit, and the third stage reignited for a second burn towards geostationary transfer orbit. However, the engine shut down early leaving the Palapa D in a 217 x 21138 km x 22.4 deg orbit. The satellite on Sep 2 used its own on-board propulsion to reach the correct 216 x 35687 km x 22.2 deg transfer orbit; this maneuver will however reduce its operational life. By Sep 8 the satellite orbit was 9616 x 35670 km x 7.8 deg.

Indonesia has one of the developing world’s more extensive satellite fleets. The early Palapa satellites were owned and operated by Indonesia’s state telecom agency Perumtel, later Telkom. In 1996 a privatization move put the Palapa satellites in the hands of the Satelindo company, and in 2003 that company was absorbed by Indosat. Meanwhile, Telkom operates a new series of satellites (Telkom 1 and 2); Media Citra Indostar and Paskifik Satelite Nusantara  (with its ACeS joint venture) also operate telecom satellites, and the LAPAN space agency launches sounding rockets and operates the LAPAN-TUBSAT low orbit satellite built with German assistance.

 Indonesian satellites:
 Satellite     Model            Operated
 Palapa A1     Hughes HS-333    1976-1986
 Palapa A2     Hughes HS-333    1976-1986?
 Palapa B1     Hughes HS-376    1983-1995
 Palapa B2     Hughes HS-376    1984      wrong orbit, recovered by Shuttle
 Palapa B2P    Hughes HS-376    1987-1996 Sold to Mabuhay 1996
 Palapa B2R    Hughes HS-376    1990-2001 refurbished, relaunched B2
                                         Sold to Newsat 2001
 Palapa B4     Hughes HS-376    1992-2005
 Palapa C1     Hughes HS-601    1996-1999 Sold to HGS 1999
 Palapa C2     Hughes HS-601    1996-     At 113.0E
 Indostar 1    Orbital Star 1   1997-     At 107.5E
 Telkom 1      LM A2100         1999-     At 108.0E
 ACES Garuda 1 LM A2100AXX      2000-     At 123.0E
 Telkom 2      Orbital Star 2   2005-     At 118.0E
 LAPAN TUBSAT  TUB              2007-     In 618 x 638 km x 97.8 deg orbit
 Palapa D      Thales SB4000B3  2009-     wrong orbit

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