Japan's JSAT said Monday it had signed a contract for the launch of a new television satellite next year.
International Launch Systems will put the JCSAT-11 satellite into orbit aboard a Russian-built ProtonBreeze M rocket to be launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan rather than the American Atlas rockets that carried previous JCSATs into orbit from Cape Canaveral, Fla.
"We chose the ILS Proton because it has the demonstrated reliability and launch tempo that JSAT established as criteria for the JCSAT-11 program," JSAT President Kiyoshi Isozaki said in a statement. "It is important for our company's business plan to launch JCSAT-11 in 2007 in order to enhance the security and versatility of our satellite system."
JCSAT-11 is the designator for one of Lockheed Martin's A2100 spacecraft and will provide television services for the Pacific Rim as well as data transmission. JSAT operated nine satellites in that neck of space.
Copyright 2006 by United Press International
Explore further: NASA spacecraft prepares for March 12 launch to study earth's dynamic magnetic space environment