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Second Internet satellite launched


Broadband to the Alps and Wales
Europe's second satellite dedicated to delivering broadband internet connections has launched successfully.

The six-ton Ka-Sat lifted off atop a Proton rocket from Baikonur in Kazakhstan and took nine hours and 12 minutes to get into orbit. The Eutelsat-operated spacecraft will bring broadband to tens of millions of European homes in so-called "not-spots" which cannot be connected to the world wide wibble.

Although this is the second broadband-dedicated satellite to get into orbit, it is considerably bigger, and has a notional capacity to serve up to two million households. The Hylas-1 platform could connect 300,000 people. As many as 30 million households in Europe are not served at all or get a poor service.

Ka-Sat has a total throughput of some 70Gbps and it should be running in the second half of the second quarter of 2011.

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