-- New Geosynchronous Orbit Spacecraft to be Azerbaijan’s First National Satellite --
-- New Order Represents the 31st Commercial GEO Communications Satellite to be Designed, Built, Tested and Deployed by Orbital --
(Dulles, VA 1 June 2010) – Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE: ORB) today announced that it has signed a contract with International Relations and Accounting Center of The Ministry of Communications and Information Technologies (Ministry) of the Republic of Azerbaijan to design, build and deliver the Azerspace/Africasat-1a commercial communications satellite. The satellite will be based on Orbital’s flight-proven STAR-2 platform and will generate approximately five kilowatts of payload power for 36 active transponders. The Azerspace/Africasat-1a satellite carries hybrid Ku and C-band payloads to provide services to Azerbaijan, Central Asia, Europe and Africa. Orbital will be responsible for providing the satellite and ground system.
Following its launch and deployment, the spacecraft will be located in geosynchronous orbit (GEO) at 46 degrees East longitude through an arrangement between the Ministry and Measat of Malaysia, which owns the rights to the orbital slot. Upon completion of in-orbit testing, operational control of the satellite will be handed over to the Ministry, which will continue to operate the spacecraft from its control center in Baku. This latest order for one of Orbital’s GEO communications satellites is the 31st STAR-class spacecraft to be ordered by customers throughout the world.
“The new contract with Azerbaijan represents the tenth commercial communications satellite order in the past two years for our Star satellites, demonstrating continued strong market demand and customer acceptance of our satellite platform and supporting ground services,” said Mr. Michael Larkin, Orbital’s Executive Vice President and General Manager of its Space Systems Group. “From the world’s largest satellite operators, such as Intelsat and SES, to regional operators such as Optus, Star One and Telenor, and now Azerbaijan, Orbital is prepared to provide our comprehensive systems capabilities to all our customers.”
Dr. Ali Abbasov, Minister of Communications and Information Technology for the Republic of Azerbaijan, stated, “The Azerspace/Africasat-1a project is a keystone to the advancement and progress of Azerbaijan as we significantly expand our communications infrastructure within our borders and our connectivity to Europe, Central Asia, Africa and the Middle East.”
About The Ministry of Communications and Information Technologies of the Republic of Azerbaijan
The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is the cabinet-level organization in the Government of Azerbaijan that is responsible for all communications and information services and technology policy, regulation and programs in Azerbaijan. Headquartered in Baku, the country’s capital city, the Ministry was formed in February 2004 by decree from President Ilhami Aliyev, who declared the advancement of communications and information technology to be a top priority for Azerbaijan. In recent years the Ministry has significantly expanded the communications infrastructure in the country and the Azerspace/Africasat-1a satellite is a major step forward in this continued expansion of services.
Orbital develops and manufactures small- and medium-class rockets and space systems for commercial, military and civil government customers. The company’s primary products are satellites and launch vehicles, including low-Earth orbit, geosynchronous-Earth orbit and planetary exploration spacecraft for communications, remote sensing, scientific and defense missions; human-rated space systems for Earth-orbit, lunar and other missions; ground- and air-launched rockets that deliver satellites into orbit; and missile defense systems that are used as interceptor and target vehicles. Orbital also provides satellite subsystems and space-related technical services to U.S. Government agencies and laboratories.
More information about Orbital can be found at http://www.orbital.com
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