By | November 29, 2000 | Feature

Intersputnik (international organisation for space communications) revealed in Moscow that it intends to launch some 100 small telecommunication satellites, each of 500kg in weight. These satellites will be used for telecommunications and TV broadcasting.

According to Intersputnik’s deputy general director, Mr Doletski, these satellites are in greater demand among those companies that do not have mass wealth – so that maybe rules out some of the oligarchs – who cannot afford to pay for ‘modern heavy satellites’.

According to company sources, buying these small satellite, launching them and putting them into orbit will cost at least $30 million (E35.77 million) and a maximum of $45 million. Conversion launch vehicles will place the satellites into orbit. Each of the spacecraft will have the following characteristics – six to 10 transponders ($1-1.2 per year), 54Mhz and a life span of around 10 years.

The previous project Intersputnik had on its books was to launch two additional LMI satellites. However, this was delayed and the company thus decided to develop an alternative projects. This produced the 100 small satellites concept. Such a big group of satellites represents a chance for Intersputnik to have storage on satellites in orbit and also to have satellites for sale, it said.

It is planned that 70 of the 100 satellites will be ordered by Intersputnik to Russian developers, while the remaining 30 will be taken up foreign operators. Intersputnik has already sent its proposals to different companies and developers and is currently considering which players will be its future partners. Other details of the project are also under consideration.

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