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DirecTV 15 Satellite a Go for Launch

Arianespace announced  Friday (May 22) that it received the go-ahead for the scheduled May 27 launch of Arian 5, a dual-payload rocket that will carry the DirecTV 15 and SKY México-1 direct-to-home satellites, from its facility in  French Guiana.

Arianespace said it received the green light for Flight VA223 following a launch-readiness review, confirming “go” status of Ariane 5. That means all is set for rollout today of Ariane 5, followed by the anticipated liftoff on May 27 during a launch window that opens at 6:16 p.m. local time in  French Guiana (5:15 p.m. ET).

 The DirecTV 15 satellite (a rendering of it is above), built by Airbus Defence and Space, will provide capacity for additional digital TV services (in the Ku-, Ka- and R-bands) for DirecTV’s U.S. customers, including capacity that can be applied to the satellite TV operator’s 4K plans.

With a design life of 15 years, DirecTV 15 is slated to be the eighth satellite orbited by Arianespace for DirecTV.

DirecTV 14, launched in December 2014, added add more VOD capacity and live streaming capabilities for DirecTV, whichlaunched a limited 4K offering last November.

The SKY México-1 spacecraft will be operated for SKY, which is owned by Mexico’s Grupo Televisa S.A.B. and DirecTV.