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 LOS ANGELES, Dec. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Hughes Communications Inc. has filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission for a proposed state-of-the-art satellite service to offer on-demand high- speed data communications and video telephony services to business and consumer markets. Dubbed Spaceway(TM), the Hughes "superhighway in the sky" system would complement the many terrestrial services currently being planned.
 Hughes Communications' filing seeks FCC authority to construct, launch and operate two satellites at 101 degrees West longitude. The uplink and downlink portions of the system will utilize a total 1000 MHz of the 2500 MHz now available in Ka-band for fixed satellite services.
 Spaceway will offer business users a wide variety of applications, including desktop video telephony and conferencing, tele-commuting, medical and technical tele-imaging and CAD/CAM data transmission. Consumers will be able to utilize the system for personal video telephony, high-speed personal computer access to on-line services like Prodigy and access to electronic CD-ROM and other interactive multimedia services. Conditional upon FCC authorization, Spaceway will be operational by 1998 and is expected to require an investment of $660 million.
 Steven D. Dorfman, Hughes Aircraft Co. senior vice president and president of its Telecommunications and Space Sector, said of the Spaceway filing: "We believe it will promote efficient use of the Ka- band frequency, which is now relatively unused for commercial satellite services. Spaceway will inaugurate new and innovative space communications for American industry and consumer markets."
 Hughes plans to be the first domestic communications satellite operator to provide bandwidth-on-demand. This capability will enable high-quality, affordable video teleconferencing and compressed video services to commercial and residential customers. High data rate services currently are not available or affordable to all small businesses and consumers who would like them.
 Spaceway would extend existing Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT) private networks into high data rate Ultra Small Aperture Terminal (USAT) systems.
 The Spaceway satellite design incorporates an innovative 48-spot beam configuration that covers the United States. The system features on-board signal processing and switching, and will accomodate digital transmissions at bit rates of 384 Kbps and up. Because its design permits reuse of allocated frequencies 12 times, the 500 MHz of spectrum requested for each of the two satellites would result in approximately 6000 MHz of useful bandwidth.
 Through this extended frequency reuse, the system derives a capacity of nearly 12,000 simultaneous two-way channels. This capacity allows the Spaceway system to support about 600,000 subscribers via low-cost and easy-to-install antennas as small as 26 inches in diameter. Only the Ka-band can accommodate the use of such small antennas for high- speed transmit and receive services.
 "Spaceway will enable virtually all businesses and consumers in the country to have access to two-way high data rate communications at affordable prices," said Dorfman. "The service will be an important contribution to our nation's information infrastructure. We ultimately expect to export this technology and service for international application."
 Hughes Communications is the world's largest private commercial satellite operator. It owns and operates five C-band Galaxy spacecraft, two dual-payload Galaxy satellites and three Ku-band SBS satellites, and also operates a global network of LEASAT communications satellites for the U.S. Navy. Additionally, Hughes Communications is a major equity partner in the American Mobile Satellite Corp. (AMSC), which will inaugurate a North American satellite mobile communications service late next year.
 Hughes Communications is a unit of GM Hughes Electronics Corp. (GMHE). The earnings of GMHE, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Motors Corp., are used to calculate the earnings per share of General Motors Class H Common Stock (NYSE: GMH).
 -0- 12/8/93
 /CONTACT: Penelope Longbottom, 310-607-4117, or Richard Dore, 310-568-6324/

CO: Hughes Communications Inc., Hughes Aircraft Co. Inc. ST: California IN: ARO CPR TLS SU:

NY-JL -- LA010 -- 1538 12/08/93 06:00 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Dec 8, 1993

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