SES World Skies has commissioned the SES-8 spacecraft from Orbital Sciences for a launch in the first quarter of 2013 for additional DTH capacity in Asia.

The spacecraft will be built on Orbital’s flight-proven STAR spacecraft platform, featuring 33 high-power Ku-band transponders to generate approximately 5KW of payload power.

SES-8 is a medium-sized satellite with beams focused on South Asia (India) and Indo-China (Thailand, Vietnam, Laos) and will be co-positioned with the NSS-6 satellite at the orbital location of 95°E.

The NSS-6 satellite, currently operating at 95%+ fill rates, is home to the largest DTH operator in India, Dish TV, with over 9.6 million subscribers.

SES World Skies president and CEO Rob Bednarek said, “SES-8 was a sixth procurement of a STAR series spacecraft from Orbital that will provide Asian customers with new state-of-the-art capacity for growth.”