Russia clinches major space deal

2015-11-11 21:01
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Moscow - A mainstay of Russia's struggling space industry said on Wednesday that it clinched a major satellite launch contract, in a sign of renewed confidence in a class of rockets that have had several costly failures in the past two years.

Russian space company International Launch Services (ILS) said it signed the contract with multinational satellite services consortium Intelsat for five launches through 2023.

The satellites are planned to be sent on Proton Breeze M rockets, which have had three expensive launch failures since mid-2014.

Andrei Kalinovsky, general director of ILS's parent company, Khrunichev Space Centre, hailed the contract as evidence that the company has begun to restore the trust of its partners.

"We are modernising our production, raising the quality of our products and services, and improving our processes," Kalinovsky said in a statement on Russian space agency Roscosmos' website.

The launches will take place from the Baikononur Cosmodrome, which Russia leases in the fellow former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan, ILS said in a statement on its website.

The company said it had launched 11 Intelsat satellites over the past 18 years.

"With this multi-launch agreement, we look forward to providing Intelsat with a flexible and reliable solution for expansion of their global fleet," ILS said, without disclosing the contract's value.

Read more on:    russia  |  space

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