Eutelsat has leased 20 Ku-band transponders on Eutelsat’s new W7 satellite to MultiChoice Africa.

The 5.6t communications satellite is built by Thales Alenia Space and is fitted with up to 70 transponders connected to five high-performance fixed and steerable beams.

The W7, colocated with W4, doubles resources at 36°E and enhances the service provided by SESAT 1.

MultiChoice has been carrying out the transfer of television channels onto the new satellite from the 14 transponders on W4 and SESAT 1 since January and the last transponder is scheduled to be moved to W7 on 1 February 2010.

The additional six transponders leased on W7 will be progressively activated by MultiChoice Africa to support new services including high-definition channels.

The satellite was placed into geosynchronous orbit by the Proton rocket in November 2009.

MultiChoice Africa is a multichannel pay television platform offering services across Africa and the adjacent Indian Ocean islands.