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Malaysia and Communication Satellite Systems

Binariang Satellite Systems Sdn Bhd (BSS) is the owner and operator of Malaysia's first regional satellite system called MEASAT (Malaysia East Asia Satellite), which provides optimum coverage of the East Asian region. The MEASAT system comprises two high-powered HS376 spacecraft built by the Hughes Space and Communications Company.

MEASAT-1, an advanced hybrid 12 C-band and 5 Ku-band payload satellite system, was launched on 13 January 1996 (Malaysian Time) from Kourou in French Guiana by Arianespace. Situated at 91.5 E, its C-band footprint covers a major part of East Asia (which includes the Philippines, Cambodia, parts of southern China, Hong Kong SAR and Taiwan Province of China, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam), northern Australia, Guam and Papua New Guinea.

MEASAT-2 was launched on 14 November 1996 (Malaysian Time). It serves up to four 72-MHz C-band and nine 48 MHz Ku-band transponders. At the orbital location of 148 E, MEASAT-2 provides reliable C-band broadcasting and telecommunications services in East Asia, eastern Australia, Guam and the mainland United States via Hawaii.

The Ku-band capacity of the MEASAT system (MEASAT-1 and MEASAT-2) offers reliable direct-to-user broadcasting services over eastern Australia, India, Indonesia (Sumatra and Java), eastern and western Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan Province of China and Viet Nam. It provides point-to-point and point-to-multipoint communications and broadcasting services within its footprints. Telemetry tracking and control is monitored from the MEASAT Satellite Control Centre in Pulau Langkawi, an island off the north-west coast of peninsular Malaysia, which has been identified as the nation's aerospace centre.

Telekom Malaysia, the largest telecommunications company in Malaysia, accesses the INTELSAT satellite systems located at the orbital slots of 60 E, 62 E, 177 E and 180 E for its international public switched networking, including the Internet backbone traffic and broadcast services. It also assesses the regional MEASAT and PALAPA satellite systems for domestic applications and ASIASAT, PANAMSAT and APSTAR for broadcast services. Together with a joint venture company, Telekom Malaysia offers Iridium services.

Telekom's current satellite services include an international public switched network using intermediate data rate (IDR) and low-cost time division multiple (LCTDMA); very small aperture terminal (VSAT) services for domestic and international applications; and television-based satellite services that include broadcast activities, digital satellite news gathering (DSNG) and television uplinking.

A third major telecommunications company, CELCOM, offers Orbcomm services. A ground station is now operating at Kijal, Terengganu, on the VHF frequency of 137- 150.5 MHz. The footprint, which covers an area with a 3,000-mile diameter, includes Brunei Darrusalam, Malaysia and Singapore. Commercial services will officially begin in July 1999. Typical applications include river data collections, flood monitoring and fleet management.

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