By Rashid Shirinov
Azerbaijan is going to place its second geostationary satellite Azerspace-2 in the near future, following the first successful launch in 2013.
“Azerspace-2 satellite is planned to be launched into orbit in April 2018,” Rashad Nabiyev, the head of Azercosmos OJSC, said on January 10.
He made the remarks at a meeting of the Cabinet of Ministers chaired by President Ilham Aliyev dedicated to the results of the country’s socio-economic development in 2017 and future objectives.
Nabiyev noted that work on the development of the satellite and its launch vehicle is on schedule.
“Azerspace-2, along with the expansion of the coverage zone, will become a reserve for Azerspace-1, which is already in orbit, which will allow us to provide customers with even more reliable services,” he said.
The new satellite will be launched from the Kourou space center using the Ariane 5 ECA launch vehicle. French company Arianespace, which earlier launched Azerbaijan’s first satellite Azerspace/Africasat-1a, will send the Azerspace-2/Intelsat-38 into the orbit.
The satellite will be placed in a geostationary orbit 45 degrees east longitude. The service area will cover the countries of Europe, Central and South Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
The manufacturer of Azerspace-2/Intelsat-38 is Space Systems Loral (SSL), which is also a provider of satellite control systems. The new satellite will further ensure the sustainability of the work, and will expand coverage of services.
As for the first satellite of Azerbaijan Azerspace-1, launched in 2013, it currently broadcasts about 130 TV and radio channels. At present, service area of Azerspace-1 includes several countries of Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
The Azerbaijani satellite provides a variety of services, such as digital television, data transmission, VSAT multi-service networks, and governmental communications. The total cost of the Azerspace-1 project was $230 million.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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