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ILS to Launch ASTRA 1KR in 2006

An Atlas 5 on the pad.

McLean VA (SPX) Dec 28, 2005
International Launch Services, a Lockheed Martin joint venture, has scheduled the launch of the ASTRA 1KR satellite on an Atlas V vehicle for April 2006 from Cape Canaveral, Fla.

This will be the first Atlas mission for SES ASTRA of Luxembourg, which is a longtime customer of International Launch Services (ILS), of McLean, Va. ILS markets launch missions on Lockheed Martin's Atlas rocket and the Khrunichev-built Proton vehicle to satellite operators worldwide.

The ASTRA 1KR mission results from contractual arrangements signed last year for launches of three satellites for SES GLOBAL companies. The companies agreed to use a mix of Atlas and Proton vehicles to provide flexibility in accommodating satellite readiness and meeting schedule demands.

Under the original agreement SES ASTRA was to launch ASTRA 1L on a Proton vehicle. It subsequently changed the payload to ASTRA 1KR, which like the other satellites covered by the launch agreements are A2100 models built by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems. The ASTRA mission now has been switched to an Atlas V-411 vehicle.

ILS President Mark Albrecht said, "We are pleased that SES ASTRA is joining a long list of successful Atlas customers." He pointed out that the Atlas family has achieved 100 percent reliability since mid-1993, launching both government and commercial payloads.

Martin Halliwell, SES ASTRA chief technology officer, said: "This is the first time that SES ASTRA chose an Atlas rocket for the launch of a new satellite. Thanks to the great experience that other SES companies have with Atlas and our own long-term relationship with the ILS team, we are confident that the launch of ASTRA 1KR will be successful."

While this is the first ASTRA satellite to use an Atlas vehicle, SES ASTRA has used ILS Proton vehicles for six launches. In addition, 10 satellites for SES AMERICOM's fleet have used a mix of Atlas and Proton vehicles. An SES affiliate, AsiaSat, also has used both vehicles, and the launch for another affiliate, SES SIRIUS AB, was awarded to Proton this year.

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Telematic Solutions Awarded EUR8Mn Contract For Vega Pad Work In Kourou,
Kourou, French Guiana (SPX) Dec 28, 2005
Telematics Solutions S.p.A., Milan, a subsidiary of OHB Technology AG, has today been awarded a contract worth EUR 8 million from Italian company Vitrociset S.p.A., Rome. In signing the contract, Telematics Solutions has assumed a leading role in the development and implementation of the complex telecommunications network and security system for the launch pad for the VEGA launcher in Kourou, French Guiana.

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