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SBS-6 (Satellite Business Systems-6) was a telecommunications satellite launched using the Ariane 441 launch vehicle from the Kourou Space Center in French Guiana. Built for Hughes Communications Inc (HCI) by Hughes Space and Communications Group, SBS 6 carried 19 41-W Ku-band transponders and 11 spares. The powerful channels allowed small, portable ground antennas to receive transmissions. Stationed above 99 deg. w, SBS 6 covered the continental US. The satellite was slated to backup other older craft in the HCI network. In the short term, however, new customers could lease transmission capacity. A Hughes HS 393 series bus, SBS 6 was drum-shaped, measuring 3.6 m in diameter, 3.6 m high. Deployed height on oribt was 9.4 m. Declared operational on November 17, 1990, it has a 15-year life expectancy.

Alternate Names

  • 20872
  • SBS6
  • Satellite Business Systems 6

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 1990-10-12
Launch Vehicle: Ariane 44L
Launch Site: Kourou, French Guiana
Mass: 1514 kg

Funding Agency

  • Pan American Satellite (United States)


  • Communications

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office

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