SpaceComm's Amos-17 completes in-orbit testing, reaches its final position

The communication satellite was launched in August to replace an earlier one that had failed.


Israel’s Space Communications on Monday said that its communication satellite, Amos-17, has successfully completed its in-orbit testing (IOT) and has reached its final position.

The satellite will provide communication services to Africa and the company will begin commercial operations in a few days.

According to Satellite Evolution, Spacecom CEO and president David Pollack said, “With commencement of Amos-17’s commercial operations, Spacecom now has three satellites servicing Africa’s growing telecom, broadband and broadcast needs: Amos-17, Amos-7 and Amos-4. Amos-17 is the most technologically advanced satellite with HTS beams to service Africa and fulfills our promise to make Africa a key element in our overall corporate strategy as we move forward to make a major difference in bridging the digital divide.”

 SpaceComms Amos-17 completes in-orbit testing, reaches its final position

Launch of Amos-17 on the SpaceX Falcon-9 rocket. image credit: SpaceX

Amos-17 was launched in August this year and has a life span of two decades. It faced two major incidents and its launch date was pushed back. In 2016, SpaceComm loss the predecessor of Amos-17, the Amos-6 satellite, when the SpaceX rocket carrying it to orbit exploded. Amos-17 was built to replace Amos-6, and the launch was scheduled for 3 August. This was postponed to 6 August after SpaceX found an issue with a valve during a static fire test.

A static fire test is a standard test SpaceX conducts before all its launches. The first stage of the rocket is clamped down and its engines are briefly fired to check on the booster systems and to see if everything is working a-ok.

The advanced communications satellite belongs to Spacecom, an Israeli company. It is a heavy satellite, and so, the boosters will need all their fuel to put it into orbit, but won't have enough juice left to make their way back to the launchpad. The thrice-used boosters will end their brief, if illustrious career with an unceremonious splash in the ocean.

With inputs from Reuters. 


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