|Type||Partnership with Continental Telephone|
American Satellite Company (ASC) was one of many Fairchild Industries subsidiary companies and was established in partnership with Continental Telephone in 1972. Emanuel Fthenakis was the President and Chief Executive Officer upon the founding of the corporation. He was replaced in 1976 by Harry Dornbrand, who was President of Fairchild Space and Electronics division at the time. Under their leadership, ASC pioneered advancements in satellite broadcasting both domestically and abroad.
In June 1973 ASC became the first company to transmit United States domestic television via satellite. The first broadcast was of an address by then Speaker of the House Carl Albert delivered in Washington D.C. and sent to the National Cable Television Association convention in Anaheim, California.
In 1982 ASC began commercially delivering the fledgling USA Today via satellite.
ASC contributed to Department of Defense communications systems and built the first digital satellite route from Hawaii to the U.S. mainland via a land base in California. The corporation also invented a shipboard antenna that could connect military vessels to satellite communications despite the pitch and yaw motion of the ship.
In 1984, the corporation control became the largest U.S. transceiver satellite communications network.
The Transmission Operations department was responsible for operations and maintenance. The Network Operations Control Center was located at Vernon, NJ, and was later relocated to Fulton County outside of Atlanta, GA.
At the end of 1987, the Southeast Region consisted of the following sites:
American Satellite initially leased satellite service on the Western Union WESTAR satellites. American Satellite contracted with RCA Astro to build the ASC-1 satellite which was launched via NASA space shuttle Discovery mission STS-51-I on August 27 1985. The satellite has 18 C-band and 6 Ku-band transponders. The satellite had a Horizonal polarity beacon at 4100 Mhz, a Vertical polarity beacon at 3700 Mhz. The Satellite was parked at 81 degrees west. ASC-2 was launch via a Delta-7925 rocket from Cape Canaveral on April 3, 1991 and was parked at 101 degrees west. ASC-3 was not used and sold to PanAmSat.