Azerbaijani ministry, Orbital Sciences Corporation sign contract
Azerbaijan, Baku, May 27 / Trend H. Valiyev /
The Azerbaijani Communications and IT Ministry signed a contract with the Orbital Sciences Corporation to produce the Azerspace national telecommunications satellite today.
The cost of the satellite will hit 163 million manat. Its construction will cost 87 million manat and 40 million manat will be spent to orbit the satellite. The satellite control center will cost 16 million manat, but the remaining 18 million manat will be spent on the satellite's insurance.
The term of the satellite will be 15 years, with a payback period of about five years.
To date, the ministry has signed a long-term contract on leasing an orbital position for Azerspace with the Malaysian satellite operator MEASAT.
Malaysia's orbital position will be used for the national satellite's needs needs, unless Azerbaijan carries out work on the full coordination of frequency assignments and its own satellite orbital position with other countries.
The ITU placed Azerspace at 43.2, 58.5 and 96 degrees east. The satellite will be equipped with three beams directed at Europe, Asia and Africa, which will allow the country to act as a transit country in broadcast channels.
One of the priority issues facing the ministry is the realization of satellite resources. The ministry intends to withdraw 80 percent of Azerspace resources to the international market, and to use the remaining 20 percent on the intrarepublican level. Malaysia expressed its willingness to acquire a 40 percent of the satellite resources.
Launch is scheduled for June 2012.
The orbiting of the satellite will mark Azerbaijan's first move to turn itself into a country with a space industry. The satellite will enable Azerbaijan to establish high-quality and reliable communications and television, as well as to increase the number of channels.