Al Yah Satellite Communications Company PrJSC (“Yahsat”)
Formed in 2007, Yahsat is a new entrant in the field of satellite communications in the Middle East and has positioned itself to be global provider of broadband services. Yahsat develops customized satellite solutions for the government as well as the commercial sector in the Middle East, Africa, Europe and Southwest Asia.
Yahsat, a subsidiary of the U.A.E. government-owned Mubadala Development, offers a range of communication services including voice, internet and television. Yahsat had two satellites in orbit and launched a third in 2016, the Al Yah 3 satellite. Al Yah 3 will extend Yahsat’s broadband services to 19 countries across Brazil and Africa. Yahsat has designed the region’s first multi-purpose satellite system, based on its extensive interaction with customers and research into their communication needs. Yahsat operates under the authority of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”).
Yahsat launched its first satellite (Yahsat-1A) on April 22, 2011. Yahsat-1A is multi-payload C/Ku/Ka band satellite covering the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Southwest Asia. Yahsat 1A, a telecommunications satellite, was launched from Kourou on 22 April 2011 at 21:37 UT. The satellite was launched by an Ariane 5 rocket and weighed approximately 6000 kg. Yahsat 1A carries Ku-, Ka-, and C-band transponders and antennas. It will provide direct-to-home television programming, and secure Ka-band communications capacity for government and military applications in the United Arab Emirates and other nations. Located in geosynchronous orbit at 52.5 degrees E longitude it will provide coverage over the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and Southwest Asia. Yahsat 1A is the first of two identical satellites. It is designed to operate for more than 15 years.
Its second satellite (Yahsat-1B) was launched toward the end of 2011. Yahsat-1B was a state-of-the-art, multi-spot Ka band satellite that provides broadband services to 26 selected countries in the Middle East, Africa, and Southwest Asia. Yahsat 1B, a telecommunications satellite, was launched from Baikonur on 23 April 2012 at 22:18 UT. The satellite was launched by a Proton-M rocket and weighed approximately 6000 kg. Yahsat 1B is the second Satellite of Al Yah Satellite Communications' new Generation Satellite Constellation and completes the current in-orbit development program. Yahsat 1B is outfitted with 25 Commercial Ka-Band Transponders operating at 110MHz and 21 Secure Transponders for Military and Government Purposes. It offers Ka-band to Southern, Central and Eastern Europe, all of Africa, and a large swath covering Central and South Asia, including India, and eastward including most of China and Southeast Asia. The Ka-band service will also be allocated through 61 narrow spot beams. The Spacecraft is equipped with two solar arrays providing 15 Kilowatts of power for the payload. Yahsat 1B will operate from an orbital position of 50.5 degrees East and will be operating in orbit for at least 15 years.
Yahsat-1A’s payload includes the same Ku band BSS frequencies as those proposed for Galaxy 26. Yahsat operates this Ku band BSS payload under a modification to the ITU’s BSS Plan for Regions 1 and 3 made for the UAE under the EMARSAT-1 name. In the Ku BSS band, Yahsat planned to provide Direct-to-Home (“DTH”) services in the Middle East, North Africa, and Southwest Asia. These DTH services are intended to be provided over small aperture terminals that are about 60 cm in diameter (24 inches), or even smaller, and are akin to the DBS services provided in the U.S. by DirecTV and DISH Network. Such small BSS/DBS terminals are more susceptible to adjacent satellite interference than typical FSS VSAT antennas due to their wider beamwidth.
The launch of Yahsat-1A into 52.5° E.L. precluded the continued operation of Galaxy 26 at 50.75° E.L., the proposed relocation of Galaxy 26 to 50.0° E.L. would not ensure that the two satellites could operate simultaneously. The relocation of Galaxy 26 by less than one degree to 50.75° E.L., and its operation there, still would cause impermissible and harmful interference into Yahsat-1A, which had ITU priority.
The US Broadcasting Board of Governors/International Broadcasting Bureau (BBG/IBB) leased one (1) High Definition (HD) video channel at a bit rate of 3.5 Megabits (MB) and one (1) radio channel at a bit rate of 256 kilobits (KB) on the Yahsat satellite at 52.5E, East Beam Transponder 15, 11.996 GHz.
The bouquet on transponder 15 includes British Broadcast Corporation (BBC) Persian, BBC Arabic, Cable News Network (CNN) International, Europe News (Euronews) and BBC World Service. It is imperative for BBG to be on transponder 15, as this will increase BBG's viewership potential and also serve as a deterrent to jamming the BBG broadcast signal, as it would problematic for the interfering party to interfere with the group of other high visibility broadcasters on transponder 15. In addition, being on transponder 15 would fulfill BBG 's mission of reaching the largest audience possible.
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