Sat-ND, 3.7.96

Sat-ND 96-07-03 - Satellite and Media News

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This issue is sponsored by TELE-satellite, Europe's Satellite Magazine 
Have a look at their homepage! >> http://www.TELE-satellit.com/ <<

China back in the launch business
APSTAR 1A, a satellite designed to carry general communications traffic
throughout much of Southeast Asia, was successfully launched from the
Chinese space centre at Xichang today. The launch had been delayed since
February, when a new Chinese Long March 3B rocket exploded within seconds
of lift-off. Today, a Long March 3 was used instead.
The satellite was built by Hughes Space and Communications Company based
upon their HS 376 model. It will be operated by APT Satellite Company Ltd.
of Hong Kong. APSTAR 1A will carry voice, data and television signals
across China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore, Vietnam and India.
It includes coverage for India that was not available on the APSTAR 1
satellite (138E,) a similar HS 376 model launched in 1994. APSTAR 2,
originally intended to complement APSTAR 1, was lost in January 1995 in
another Long March launch failure.
The satellite weighs 1.4 tons and has a life expectancy of 10 years,
Chinese state television said when it reported the launch today. CHINASAT,
another Hughes-built satellite, is scheduled for launch on a Chinese Long
March rocket in August.

Polish Government switches off Med-TV
There is a simple explanation for the absence of the Kurdish TV station
Med-TV on EUTELSAT II-F2 (10E): Polish authorities pulled the plug. 
Ilhan Kizilhan, director of Med-TV, told a news conference today that
programming had been uplinked from Poland for some time. But now, the
Polish Government vetoed a satellite access contract with a Polish
broadcaster after pressure from the Turkish government.
London-based Med-TV, watched by a large number of the 20 million Kurds in
Turkey, has a British satellite TV license. Programming originates from
studios in Brussels, Belgium. 
"A number of alternative options remain," Ilhan Kizilhan said today,
announcing to continue broadcasts. He claimed that Portugal, Spain, France
and Germany had also bowed to Turkish pressure since Med-TV began
broadcasting in 1995.
The station's name is derived from the original name of the Kurdish
people, the Meds. It is mainly financed by wealthy Kurdish businessmen
living in Europe.

Satellite Positions Update
Russian DBS satellite GALS 2 seems to be heading for 36E, the slot where
GALS 1 was shifted to recently. Latest data available indicate the
satellite had been drifting at high speed since mid-June. During the last
days, the satellite slowed down a bit and was reported by NASA to be
located around 37E recently while still drifting.
INTELSAT 510, replaced by INTELSAT 703 a few days ago at 57E, began
drifting westward on July 1. There is no new assignment for this INTELSAT
oldie launched eleven years ago, meaning it is likely to be de-orbited. 
Meanwhile, INTELSAT 709 was still testing at 57W yesterday.

Leo's golden goal, part 2 (cf. Sat-ND, 1.7.96)
Until now, Leo Kirch wasn't really well-known, not even in Germany. The
69-year old media tycoon is hardly seen in public, and he's given just two
interviews in his whole life. For about thirty years, he has successfully
been trading television rights for movies. German pubcasters, holding the
broadcast monopoly until the mid-eighties, paid the bill. They did so
unknowingly, as Kirch had set up dozens of affiliates not officially
connected to his empire. But the money of the long-time monopoly stations
in the end made him what he is today: a media tycoon.
He owns stakes in German commercial stations such as SAT.1 and DSF, a
sports channel. Besides, he also holds equities in TV stations in Italy
and Spain. His German digital TV package DF1 is slated for launch at the
end of this month. In order to offer enough programming, he has clinched
several billion-dollar output deals with US majors in the last months. And
now he has definitely entered the global market by buying the
international television rights for the 2002 and 2006 Football (soccer)
World Cups. 
It was an offer the international football federation FIFA simply couldn't
refuse. With his partner, the Swiss-based marketing agency ISL, Kirch
today ended more than 25 years of guaranteed access for public service
broadcasters to the world's biggest single sport event. Kirch and partners
will pay SFr 2.8 billion (DM3.4 billion, US$2.2 billion, 1.5 billion).
Reportedly, it was a close decision. The Kirch bid was accepted with a
margin of just one vote, and ironically the German FIFA representative
Mayer-Vorfelder was said to be absent during the vote. 
However, the rights neither cover the United States nor do they include
pay TV or pay per view rights. Said FIFA general secretary Sepp Blatter,
"in Mali, in the mountains of Switzerland and in Bolivia people have the
right to watch the World Cup." Nonetheless, neither party  involved in the
deal explicitly stated the games would be transmitted live.
A speaker for the BBC refused to give any comment, saying the deal has to
be studied. German pubcasters ARD and ZDF, knowing Kirch more closely,
said they had no chance of showing the tournaments. A speaker for Kirch's
main station SAT.1 said that it was far too early to say who would
broadcast the events. Finally, a Kirch spokesman said that all games will
be shown on free-to-air TV. The word "live" was also missing in his
Many experts expect major sports events to be shown live only for an
additional payment in the future. It is yet unclear whether this will work
in Europe as some countries as well as the European Commission may prepare
legislation to prevent exactly this.

Transponder News
By Norbert Schlammer, 100415.3560@compuserve.com

Two new channels have appeared on INTELSAT 703 that recently replaced
INTELSAT 510. At 11.542 GHz h, sound 7 MHz, the first Kazakh channel can
be received. Probably, a 240 cm (8 ft.) dish is required to see anything.
The other new channel offers a better reception quality although located
in the Ku band. Muslim TV International, already available at 34.5W, now
is also shown here at 4.177 GHz lhc, sound 6.5 MHz,

Re: Sat-ND, 25.6.96
Your information from our website is correct -- for our VBI technology --
however, our in-band TVT1/4 system is based upon a proprietary method of
injecting data into the *active portion* of the video signal in a manner
that is visually imperceptible to the television viewer.  This system
provides a throughput of over 300,000 bps, much faster than our VBI system
which provides throughputs at 15,000 bps per line of VBI (i.e. up to
150,000 bps with 10 lines). 
If anyone would like pricing our other information I invite them to e-mail
me directly at jmcneill@wavephore.com.
(James E. McNeill, Jr., Director/ International Business Dev't WavePhore,

Quite a difference... sorry for the inaccuracy.  Ed.

Copyright 1996 by Peter C. Klanowski, pck@LyNet.De. All rights reserved.

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