SAT Observations 97.05.07

A news release from Cairo, Egypt, located at 30.3 North - 31.15 East,
- Satellite and Transponder Observations in C- and Ku-Band,
- Commented from the Middle Eastern perspective.
Send relevant infos, interesting news, and creative comments to :


Upon your request are forwarded messages kept anonymous.

- SOS Thaicom ?

THAICOM 3, 85 East, http://www.satcodx.com/thai78east.html
The newest Thaicom is supposed to be testing at 120 East, but retrieved
NORAD 2-Elements figures show a 85.3 East position, moving westwards.
This could mean that the satellite is already on it's way to it's final
78.5 East position in order to take over the duties of Thaicom 1.

SME Comment: Do not take these figures too serious. There have been ugly
mistakes in the data seen in the past. Specialists in tracking satellite
data, report the Thaicom 3 still testing on 120 East.

PANAMSAT 4, 68.4 East, http://www.satcodx.com/pas4.html
Channel 23 of the SHOWTIME DStv package, the "ONTV channel listing"
received today a musical background. Until now the channel was
transmitted without sound. The accompaning music is that of the UK
version of VH-1, as usual on the SHOWTIME Network without commercials.

From various sides I receive again rumour confirmations about the move
of the SHOWTIME - 1stNET DStv package to Arabsat 2A, to be starting in
not less than 30 days. The official startdate seems now to been have set
to July 1st.

The broadcasters have, eledgedly, been talking to many LNB manufactures
about polarity switching LNB's in order to be able to use transponders
in both Horizontal and Vertical polarization. 

NHK Tokyo on 12.602 GHz, V, was again partially coded tonight, using two
different coding algorythms for exactly the upper half and the lower
half of the screen. I personally have not seen anything like it before.

INTELSAT 801, 64 East, http://www.satcodx.com/i801.html
The new generation Intelsat has now reached 64 East and is, supposingly,
taking up its actions from today. Any observations please to my usual
mail address.

Intelsat 602 will move from its present position on 62.8 East to 62 East
in August, according to Intelsat sources.

INTELSAT 703, 57 East, http://www.satcodx.com/i703.html
The ORBIT ESPN 2 channel is only used when two conflicting live events
need to be aired at the same time.
(Info kindly submitted by Lisa, Rome)

Channel 19 on the ORBIT package is used for English commentary of
English Premier football matches in parallel with the Arabic commentary
on ESPN ORBIT on channel 18.
(Info kindly received from Marios Avraam, Cyprus)

A source at Star TV reports that they will be adding a number of
channels to there package on the ORBIT Network; one of them will be the
FOX Cartoons & Childrens channel, which was on channel 22 in the past.

ARABSAT 2B, 30.5 East, http://www.satcodx.com/a2b.html
The Arabsat Organization does report that the Ku-band frequencies on
this satellite are also used for digital SNG.

The ASBU transmissions on transponder 13, 3.966 GHz, Rc, were tonight
partly coded in a simple Discret 13, a new phenomenon on this satellite.

The weak digital signal on 12.521 GHz, H, has ceased. The test card on
4.167 GHz, Rc, with the Lybian PR-TV audio, was exchanged for a simple
color bar one.

HOT BIRD 1, 13 East,  http://www.satcodx.com/hb1.html
Tests of the German Music channel VIVA are now receivable in the Middle
East, with a very strong signal on 11.369 GHz, H, MPEG-2, SR 4000, FEC
3/4, VPID 0256, APID 02BB. The pictures are overlayed by a test card, as
previous observed in Europa.

SME Comment: According to unnamed sources the signal will be regular
after the summer holidays and called VIVA Plus with a mixture out of
VIVA I and 2, but staying on the widebeam, which will make it my
favourite music channel (during writing of the regular update mailings).

Radio Asia started testing today on the previous analogue MCM
transponder 55, 11.304 GHz, H, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, VPID 007C, APID 0086.
It is a Tamil TV station. An on-screen message contained an postal
address in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. 

Sports events encrypted in Discret 13 on the analogue transmissions of
RAI 3, transponder 16, 11.534 Ghz, V, are shown Free-To-Air on RAI 3, as
part of the RAI digital package on Hot Bird 2, widebeam transponder 54,
11.804 GHz, V.

AMOS 1, 4 West, http://www.satcodx.com/amos1.html
Yesterday was a busy day on the first Israeli communications satellite.
Several feeds on the vertical Israeli beam could be observed:
transponder 3L, 11.137 GHz, for the Palestinian version of an
Presidential press conference, transponder 3U, 11.176 GHz, showed the
IBA version of the Weizmann/Arafat show, both transponder had audio
subcarriers on 6.60 MHz.
Transponder 5L, 11.552 GHz, was used yesterday and today for more feeds
for Palestian TV with audio subcarriers on 6.60 MHz (TV) and 7.20 MHz

EXPRESS 2, 14 West, http://www.satcodx.com/e2.html
I like to acknowledge the "copy and paste" mistake I made in the last
report, giving the Express 2 news a wrong header. Exuse please...

Various reader however could "see" the signal, but no-one had luck yet
in getting a lock on the digital transmission. Could be too weak in our
area ?! I don't think so, the analogue test card was superior.

DrDish@TV, Kopernikus 2, http://www.satcodx.com/k2.html
As usual on the 2nd Friday of month, you can watch Dr Dish TV on
Kopernikus 2: 11.548 GHz, V, PAL, Audio 6.65 MHz, 20-23 CET, but still
not in the Middle East. My calls for help remained unheard.
The new feature on this Friday will be an English subcarrier, on a yet
unknown frequency.
(Info kindly submitted by D.de Jong via SATCO-DX)

SAT-MidEast Intern, http://www.sat-net.com/sat-mideast/
This issue of the SAT-MidEast Observations had again various infos
provided by Ghassan Tabet, which I slowly suspect to really enjoy being
chained to his TV during his unfortunate injury period.
I never got so many factual reports from him...

Today is in the Middle East and other Islamic countries New Year's Eve.
On May 8th starts the Islamic Year 1418.

A very happy New Year to all Islamic readers: KOLLO SANA WENTA TAIB !

Last but not least: All Swedish readers, and one in peticular, a very
happy Christ Ascension Day ! Have a great Holiday !

Best regards,

Henk C. Room / Sat-MidEast / Cairo - Egypt
- SAT-MidEast maintains a site with all relevant Middle Eastern
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