From its equatorial launch site at 154 degrees West Longitude, a Zenit-3SL launch vehicle lifted the 5500 kg (12,125 lb.) Intelsat Americas™-8 satellite to geosynchronous transfer orbit (GTO), on its way to a final geostationary position at 89 degrees West Longitude. Two-and-a-half minutes into the flight, the first stage of the Zenit-3SL vehicle separated and then the protective payload fairing was jettisoned. Five minutes later, the second stage separated from the Block DM upper stage. The upper stage burned for nearly eleven minutes, coasted for about ten minutes, and then separated from the spacecraft over Brazil, just 29 minutes after liftoff. A ground station in Fucino, Italy, acquired the first signal from the satellite about 15 minutes after spacecraft separation.