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FCC Bounces Sirius Application for New Satellite

Commission wants more info on orbital debris and safe disposal.

Sirius will have to reapply if it wants to put up its FM-6 satellite.

The FCC has rejected its application to launch and operate the satellite, which is intended to help Sirius reduce the number of birds in its network. The commission said the application was defective and essentially invited the company to reapply.

The chief of the Satellite Division of the International Bureau Robert G. Nelson wrote to the company — under Sirius’ former name Satellite CD Radio Inc. — saying the application lacked the necessary technical information regarding parameters that would prevent orbital debris from becoming a problem. The purpose of those requirements is to help others evaluate the proposal for collision avoidance and safe flights.

“Although not grounds for dismissal, we request Satellite CD Radio to provide two additional clarifications in any future re-filing,” he wrote. Those include more info on what the company plans to do with this satellite after its projected service life.

“Satellite CD Radio should confirm the inclination of the disposal orbit, as well as provide any information it has supporting the long-term stability of the disposal orbit.”

It also asked for more technical information regarding the cross-polar isolation of its antenna.