Eurobird 1

Eurobird 1

Eurobird 1 is a Eutelsat operated satellite, used primarily for digital television. It is located at 28.5 degrees east in the Clarke Belt, just within the range of most satellite dishes pointed at SES Astra's Astra 2A, 2B and 2D at 28.2°. It was launched in March 2001, and after a short period testing at 33° E, joined Eutelsat 2F4 at 28.5° E.

The satellite has three beams, one fixed, covering almost all of Europe as well as north-western Africa, although carrying only United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland targeted channels, and two steerable - the first, "S1", co-focused with the fixed beam but with a Europe-only footprint, and a second, "S2", aimed to central Europe. This beam features many transponders with low symbol rates, used for satellite news gathering.

Once stationed at 28.5° E, the satellite was promoted as providing satellite coverage for all of Europe, and featured both analogue and digital television and radio services serving Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and other countries. Many of the services it carried had previously been on Kopernikus 2 which had operated at 28.5° E since 1990. These stations slowly started to leave, mostly due to viewers/listeners in those target audiences moving to more traditional orbital positions - 19.2° E for Austria, and the relatively new 23.5° E for the Czech and Slovak Republics. Additional demand for bandwidth at 28° E, to carry HDTV signals, is likely to lead to S2 having its frequency plan re-arranged so as to allow Sky Digibox receivers to see its transponders.

It features 24 active transponders and 12 backup transponders, all Ku band. 12 of its transponders are significantly wider (72 MHz bandwidth) than traditional broadcast satellites, and are reconfigurable into multiple "virtual" transponders. Each transponder is fixed only in its polarity, and many are carrying at least two, and up to 6 virtual transponders.

External links

* [ Eurobird 1 Transponder lineup]

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