3 December 2013 - SpaceX Launches Its First Satellite In Supersynchronous Orbit


Image copyright James McCloskey

 On 3 December 2013, SpaceX successfully launched and the SES-8 satellite and brought it into orbit.

SES-8 is a communications satellite that was developed for SES.

With that achievement, it became the first private company to put a satellite in supersynchronous transfer orbit.

This is a geostationary but with a larger apogee (altitude) than the geostationary transfer orbit (GTO), that's more commonly used for communications satellites.

Here at 36,100 kilometres (22,400 mi) above sea level, approximately 300 kilometres (190 mi), higher than the GTO, the satellites serves the South Asian And Indo-China needs of SES clients.

The SES-8 Communications satellite was launched from Cape Canaveral on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket.

It marked the seventh launch of the Falcon 9. And because it was the initial launch into supersynchronous orbit, SES, got a discounted launch price of "well under US$60 million".

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