Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Roscosmos Ostapenko calls for end to Foreign communication satellites

Head of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) Oleg Ostapenko has sent a letter to Vice Premier Dmitry Rogozin suggesting giving up the practice of ordering civilian communication and broadcasting satellites abroad, Kommersant daily reported on Friday.

The new head of Roscosmos regards it as a form of covert subsidizing of foreign manufacturers.

As a result Europe's aerospace & defence corporation, EADS may lose part of Russian contracts and Information Satellite Systems (ISS) OJSC may become the sole supplier of civilian communication satellites, the newspaper concludes.

In this context the Roscosmos and the Federal Communication Agency will consider issues of developing delivery vehicles and guarantees of launching Express-AMU2, Express-AMU3 and Express-AMU4 satellites as they will be compiling the Federal Space Program for 2016-2025 "considering the placement of orders for the delivery of the said satellites from a sole supplier - ISS OJSC.

"However, Roscosmos does not conceal the fact that while fulfilling civilian orders ISS is forced to attract "foreign contactors."

Thus, a modification of Express-A series was developed together with Alcatel Space, while two direct broadcasting satellites Express-AT1 and Express-AT2 are being developed in partnership with the French division of Thales Alenia Space.

The newspaper adds that it follows from Ostapenko's letter that ISS has difficulties with the fulfillment of current orders.

Thus, Express-AM8 satellite can be launched in August 2014 the earliest "given delays in the delivery and repairs of onboard equipment," the letter says.

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