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SpaceX launches Egyptian communications satellite

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket's first stage was reused for the 99th flight, and it was the seventh launch and landing for this B1062 first stage.

SpaceX launched a Egyptian communications satellite (Credit: SpaceX)

May 09, 2022, A two-stage Falcon 9 rocket carrying Nilesat 301, a satellite that will be operated by the Egyptian company Nilesat, launched from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida Wednesday at 5:04 p.m. EDT (2104 UTC).

The Falcon 9's first stage came back to Earth about 8 minutes and 45 seconds after launch, touching down on the SpaceX drone ship Just Read the Instructions, which was stationed in the Atlantic Ocean a few hundred miles off the Florida coast. It was the seventh launch and landing for this Falcon 9 first stage, and the fairing halves were recovered by SpaceX Doug.

The booster previously helped loft two GPS satellites, two batches of SpaceX's Starlink internet spacecraft, and two private crewed missions — the September 2021 Inspiration4 mission to Earth orbit and Ax-1, which in April became the first all-private astronaut mission to go to the International Space Station

The Falcon 9’s upper stage ignited its single Merlin engine two times, first to reach a temporary parking orbit, then to propel Nilesat 301 into an elliptical transfer orbit stretching tens of thousands of km above Earth.

Deployment of Nilesat 301 from the Falcon 9’s upper stage occurred about 33 minutes into the mission at a perigee of 314 km and an Apogee of 44,955 km. (Nilesat 301 will be commissioned in geostationary orbit, which lies about 22,245 miles, or 35,800 kilometers, above Earth.)

The Nilesat 301 communications satellite undergoes a solar array deployment test. Credit: Thales Alenia Space

NileSat 301; Built in France by Thales Alenia Space, Nilesat 301 will support Ultra HD television broadcasts and internet connectivity, replacing the Nilesat 201 spacecraft launched in 2010. The spacecraft is owned by Nilesat, a company controlled by Egyptian government organizations. Ahmed Anis, CEO of Nilesat added that the new satellite would expand coverage. In addition to the areas covered by the current one, the countries of Southern Africa and the Nile River basin will be covered, in order to achieve greater communication with the peoples of the African continent and follow the directions of political leadership in the deepening of Egyptian-African relations.

Immune to interference

Regarding the interference operations that satellites are exposed to from time to time, Ahmed Anis said that the Nilesat 301 was manufactured according to an advanced technology that allows it to identify any interference source by itself and automatically. It will also be able to handle interference to provide full insurance for the television channels operating on it. The new satellite is also characterized by the ability to maneuver the antennas to change the coverage areas according to the needs of African countries, which are a new market for Nilesat satellites. Anis also indicated that intense negotiations were carried out to expand and deepen strategic partnerships with the main entities that work in the area of ​​satellite channels transmission with our brothers in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait,

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