Feeds

Rogue TV satellite brought to heel after auto reboot

Wanderings, random shoutings ended by flat batteries

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Intelsat bird Galaxy 15 is responding to commands again, having exhausted its batteries over eight months of uncontrolled broadcasting, thus forcing an automatic reboot.

The satellite rebooted on 23 December, and started transmitting its telemetry. Engineers from Intelsat picked that up and were able to get the rogue satellite into safe mode, so it is no longer a risk to other broadcasters and will now be tested to see if it can be returned to active service.

Galaxy 15 had been happily broadcasting TV pictures and routing communications since 2005, but in April this year it went rogue and refused to respond to routine commands intended to fix its orbital drift. The drifting satellite was unlikely to bump into anything else – orbit is fairly big – but it was still operating, and so it would automatically relay received signals as it passed close to nearby birds, potentially causing interference as it transmitted the same signal on a similar frequency.

The batteries weren't expected to last quite as long as they did, failure and reboot was expected within a few months, but many satellite companies managed to focus their uplinks to avoid the rogue – preventing it transmitting but eking out the main batteries.

Now that it has rebooted, Intelsat has charged up the batteries again, and started a complete diagnostic to see if Galaxy 15 can return to service. The satellite was supposed to last until 2025, so even if it burns through some manoeuvring fuel getting into a proper orbit it should have some life left in it – assuming they can work out why it failed in the first place. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
YOU are the threat: True confessions of real-life sysadmins
Who will save the systems from the men and women who save the systems from you?
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Ofcom snatches 700MHz off digital telly, hands it to mobile data providers
Hungry mobe'n'slab-waving Blighty swallows spectrum
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.