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Astrium to equip Kazakhstan's satellite integration centre

JSC NC Kazakhstan Gharysh Sapary (KGS). An Atrium photo

PARIS (BNS): Following the agreement of a contract, Astrium, a subsidiary of EADS, will deliver and install all test equipment at Kazakhstan’s Satellite Integration and Test Centre to be built in Astana.

Astrium and Kazakhstan Gharysh Sapary (KGS), the company entrusted with the development of Kazakhstan’s space programme, signed the contract during the visit of President Nazarbayev, Republic of Kazakhstan, to Paris in October.

Under the contract, Astrium will provide and install the various test equipment - mechanical, radiometric, thermal and acoustic facilities - at the new Satellite Assembly, Integration and Test (AIT) Centre and also assist in the construction of the AIT Centre to ensure coordination with the test equipment.

The AIT Centre will form part of the ‘Space City’ that the Kazakhstan space agency, Kazcosmos, is developing in Astana. The city will also include the ground segment for the two Astrium-built satellites, as well an administrative building and a museum dedicated to the country’s long space history.

A Joint Venture signed between KGS and Astrium to jointly manage the Astana AIT Centre and implement Kazakhstan’s future satellite programmes will now become operational,  EADS Astrium release said in a release.

Kazakhstan has been involved in spaceflight since the very beginning. In 1957, the Soviet Union chose Baikonur as the launch site for the first satellite, the legendary Sputnik 1. Then, in 1961, the world’s first astronaut, Yuri Gagarin, took off from Baikonur.

Baikonur is still Russia’s primary launch site under lease from the Republic of Kazakhstan. Since the early space age, all the human Soyouz flights to the Space Stations have taken off from Baikonur.


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