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Arianespace to launch Arsat-1


A graphical representation of the Arsat-1 satellite in orbit.

EVRY (BNS): Arianespace will launch the Arsat-1 satellite for Argentine satellite operator Empresa Argentina de Soluciones Satelitales Sociedad Anonima, or Arsat, in mid-2012 under a contract announced June 28 by Evry, France-based launch services provider.

The satellite which is expected to weigh around 2,900 kg, at launch, will be placed into geostationary transfer orbit by an Ariane 5 or Soyuz launcher from the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, according to a news report by Arianespace.

"We are very pleased with our selection of Arianespace to launch the first geostationary satellite built in Argentina," Pablo Tognetti, Chairman and CEO of ARSAT, was quoted as saying in the report.

Financial terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Arsat-1 will be fitted with twelve 36 MHz, eight 54 MHz and four 72 MHz transponders, all in Ku band. It will offer a wide range of telecommunications, data transmission, telephone and television services mainly across all of Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay.

"Arianespace is especially proud to have this opportunity to work with a South American satellite operator, and we would like to thank ARSAT for selecting us," said Jean-Yves Le Gall, Chairman and CEO of Arianespace.

The satellite is being built by the Argentine company INVAP, with Astrium and Thales Alenia Space as leading equipment suppliers. Arsat-1 will be the second Argentine satellite launched by Arianespace, after Nahuel 1A, orbited in 1997.

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