This excerpt taken from the DTV 10-K filed Mar 1, 2005.
Satellites. DIRECTV U.S. currently uses a fleet of six satellites to broadcast its service from its 101 WL, 110 WL and 119 WL orbital locations. DIRECTV U.S. also broadcasts from 72.5 WL under its arrangement with Telesat, Industry Canada and the FCC. Additionally, DIRECTV U.S. broadcasts from 95 WL using transponders on a satellite it leases. Most of DIRECTV U.S. programming is distributed from 101 WL.
The FCC licensed DIRECTV U.S. to operate 46 DBS frequencies at various orbital positions including 32 frequencies at the 101 WL orbital location, 11 frequencies at the 119 WL orbital location, and three frequencies at the 110 WL orbital location. In the third quarter of 2004, DIRECTV U.S. obtained final approval from Industry Canada and the FCC to use the 72.5 WL orbital location. As a part of DIRECTV U.S. arrangement with Telesat, DIRECTV U.S. transferred its DIRECTV 3 satellite, which was previously used as an in-orbit spare, to the 82 WL orbital location for use by Telesat and relocated its DIRECTV 5 satellite to the 72.5 WL orbital location, where it broadcasts its service using 16 frequencies.
Satellites Under Construction. DIRECTV U.S. currently has seven satellites under construction. DIRECTV 8, which is expected to launch in the second quarter of 2005, will provide backup capacity at the 101 WL orbital location. DIRECTV 9S, which is expected to launch in the first quarter of 2006, will provide backup capacity at the 101 WL and 119 WL orbital locations.
In the third quarter of 2004, DIRECTV U.S. announced a plan for five new next-generation satellites. DIRECTV U.S. plans to launch SPACEWAY 1 and SPACEWAY 2 by mid-2005, which will be used for DTH programming instead of broadband data services as originally planned. DIRECTV U.S. also plans to launch DIRECTV 10 and DIRECTV 11 in early 2007. These four satellites will provide DIRECTV U.S. with increased capability for local and national high-definition channels, as well as capacity for new interactive and enhanced services and standard-definition programming. Once launched, these satellites will operate from our Ka-band orbital locations. In addition, DIRECTV 12S is also being built and will serve as a ground spare.