|Mission type||Military communications|
|Operator||Paradigm Secure Communications|
On behalf of British Ministry of Defence
|Mission duration||15 years|
|Launch mass||4,700 kilograms (10,400 lb)|
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||11 March 2007|
|Launch site||Kourou ELA-3|
Skynet 5A is the first in a series of new-generation Skynet military communications satellites, used by the British Ministry of Defence. It was launched aboard an Ariane 5 carrier rocket at 22:03 GMT on 11 March 2007.
It was originally planned for launch on 10 March, but due to a problem with a sensor controlling the launch pad water deluge system, the launch was delayed one day.
Skynet 5A is being used to provide secure communications services for the British armed forces and NATO. Skynet 5A had a launch mass of 4.7 tonnes, and operates with a payload power of 5 kilowatts, four times more than the previous-generation Skynet 4 satellites.
Skynet 5A is located at 6 degrees East