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Thaicom Migrates Customers To THAICOM-6 After THAICOM-5 Technical Problem

Thaicom’s THAICOM-6, also called AfriCom-1. Image courtesy of Orbital ATK.

Thaicom Public Company Limited has reported progress in its ongoing efforts to migrate customers from Thaicom 5 after the satellite suffered a technical anomaly. The company has informed its satellite television broadcast customers to migrate their television platforms from Thaicom 5 to Thaicom 6, which will begin operating on 15 February 2020.

“Thaicom is doing the best we can to find suitable solutions in order to ensure the continuity of services for our customers. We conduct our business with strict adherence to relevant laws and concession terms.” said Anant Kaewruamvongs, Thaicom CEO. “We would like to thank the Ministry of Digital Economy and Society and the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission for their continued support in the process.”

In December 2019, Thaicom 5 began experiencing technical difficulties, leading Thaicom to duplicate some channels to neighboring satellites. The company recently explained that its project to extend the fuel life of Thaicom 5 and develop new so-called space drone technology to attach the fuel system to the satellite is entirely unrelated to the recent technical anomaly the satellite experienced.

Thaicom 5 was constructed by Alcatel Alenia Space, and is based on the Spacebus 3000A satellite bus, with a configuration identical to the Thaicom 3 satellite which it replaced. It is equipped with 25 G/H band (IEEE C band) and 14 J band (IEEE Ku band) transponders, and at launch it had a mass of 2,800 kilograms (6,200 lb), with an expected operational lifespan of 12 years. Thaicom 5 was launched in May 2006.

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