SpaceX launches Eutelsat 36D, lands booster on seventh reuse anniversary

TAMPA, Fla. — SpaceX launched Eutelsat’s latest geostationary satellite March 30 on a trip due to take around half a year to a geostationary orbit slot over Africa and Eurasia. 
A Falcon 9 rocket carrying the roughly 5,000-kilogram Eutelsat 36D lifted off 5:52 p.m. Eastern from Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center, Florida, and placed the satellite into a geostationary transfer orbit 34 minutes later.
Eutelsat 36D is based on the all-electric Airbus Eurostar Neo platform and equipped with 70 physical Ku-band transponders for providing TV and government connectivity services from 36 degrees East. The satellite has a steerable antenna and is set to replace French fleet operator Eutelsat’s aging Eutelsat 36B satellite.
Eva Berneke, Eutelsat’s CEO, said Eutelsat 36D is on track to start commercial services in the second half of 2024, after reaching position and completing health checks.
The satellite would be co-located with Ekspress-AMU1, also known

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