Arianespace signs deal to launch Azerbaijani satellite

Fri 05 Nov 2010 05:41 GMT | 09:41 Local Time

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Azerbaijan's Ministry of Communications and Information Technology has signed a contract with Arianespace for the launch of its first satellite.

All companies attending the tender for launching of Azerbaijan’s first communication satellite were strong but according to opinions of our experts and advisors companies Ariane ECA is the right choice, Ali Abbasov, Minister of Communication and Information Technologies informed after signing ceremony of contract between Azerbaijan and Arianespace Company.

The Ariane 5ECA rocket carrier will launch the satellite in the final quarter of 2012, Communications Minister Ali Abbasov said today.

The first satellite will be launched into orbit from cosmodrome in Kuru Island of French Guiana (South America) in Atlantic Ocean.

Launching of Azerbaijan’s first national communication satellite will cost $ 213 mln. $120 ml of this will be preparation of satellite. Launching of satellite via carrier rocket will cost $ 93 mln.

The production of Azerbaijan’s first satellite has already started in USA and will be over in September, 2012. Azerbaijan leased Malaysia’s orbital position for 20 years. Recently, authorized company will be selected for insurance of the satellite and a contract wil be signed on this: “We’ll select insurance company and it will be in cooperation with te local company.”

In turn, Arianespace company president Jean-Yves Le Gall noted that "today is very important for Arianespace and Azerbaijan".
"It is important for Azerbaijan since in the next two years the country will reach significant effects in the development of cosmic industry. In turn, we will put all efforts for the first Azerbaijani satellite to be launched into orbit in the planned terms", he said.

According to Jean-Yves Le Gall the company has launched 285 satellites about 30 years and it launched its 39th satellite last week during this year: “The weight of satellite is more than 3 tons and we’ve already launched the satellites.”

The contract was signed by the director of the Communications Ministry's international relations centre, Jalil Jafarov, and Arianespace General Director Jean-Yves Le Gall, Fineko/ABC reported.

Work to prepare and launch the satellite has been under way since 4 October 2008 following a decree by President Ilham Aliyev.

The ministry has signed a contract with the USA's Orbital Sciences Corporation to produce the satellite.

The ministry has also signed a long-term contract on leasing an orbital position for Azerspace with the Malaysian MEASAT satellite operator, APA noted.

The European Space Agency's Ariane beat Russia's Proton carrier rocket and Ukraine's Zenith to launch the Azerbaijani satellite.




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