HUGHES SPACE AND COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY
Communications and Customer Relations
P.O. Box 92919 (S10/S323)
Los Angeles, CA 90009
Media Relations (310) 364-6363
Investor Relations (310) 662-9688 www.hughespace.com
KOUROU, French Guiana, Nov. 23, 1998 -- Hughes Space and
Communications Company is set to launch SATMEX 5, an HS 601HP
satellite for Mexico, Friday, Dec. 4, from Kourou, French Guiana. It
will be the 10th launch of the year for Hughes. The 34-minute window
for launch by Arianespace on an Ariane rocket opens at 9:42 local time (4:42 p.m. PST, 7:42 p.m. EST, and 12:42 a.m. Dec. 5 GMT).
SATMEX 5 is a high-power HS 601 satellite built for Satmex. It is
the third generation of satellites Hughes has built for Mexico,
preceded by Morelos I and Morelos II, launched in 1985, and by
Solidaridad 1 and 2, launched in 1993 and 1994. SATMEX 5 will replace
Morelos II at 116.8 degrees West longitude to provide business
communications, television distribution, and educational programming
services to a region stretching from Canada to the Patagonia.
SATMEX 5 has 7,000 watts of payload power, 10 times that of Morelos
II, and a 15-year design life, double that of Morelos II. The
satellite features 48 transponders, 24 in C-band and 24 in Ku-band.
The 24 C-band transponders are powered by 36-watt traveling wave-tube
amplifiers, and the 24 Ku-band transponders are powered by 132.5-watt
traveling wave-tube amplifiers.
SATMEX 5 also carries a xenon ion propulsion system, XIPS, which
will be used for north and south stationkeeping. Hughes was the first
to launch a commercially available ion propulsion system when it
launched PAS-5 in August 1997, and also developed a similar ion engine
currently flying on NASA's Deep Space 1. The commercial XIPS is 10
times more efficient than traditional chemical bipropellants and
allows for a reduction in propellant mass of up to 90%. SATMEX 5 is
the fourth HS 601HP to carry XIPS.
Hughes Space and Communications Company, a unit of Hughes
Electronics Corporation, is the world's leading manufacturer of
geostationary commercial communications satellites, and is also a
major supplier of spacecraft and equipment to the United States
government. It is also a builder of weather satellites for the United
States and Japan.
The earnings of Hughes Electronics are used to calculate the
earnings per share attributable to GMH (NYSE symbol) common stock.
TV Editors: The launch will be carried in the U.S. on Galaxy VI,
transponder 17 in C-band, at 99 degrees West. You are welcome to use
the transmission for your broadcasts.