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Satellite loss to have no effect on transition to digital TV

August 07, 2012, 15:13 UTC+3

The main Russian channels in the digital format will be accessible in the regions

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MOSCOW, August 7 (Itar-Tass) — The loss of the Express-MD2 communication satellite will have no effect on Russia's transition to digital television broadcasting, a source at the press service of the Russian Television and Radio Broadcasting Network company told Itar-Tass.

"The incident will have no effect on the pace of introduction of digital broadcasting in Russia," the source said.

The company reserved capacities in the Express and was ready to conclude an agreement with the Space Communication company to lease a transponder (40 MHz) to organize broadcasting of the first federal multiplex (a package of digital television channels) of the DVD-T2 standard in Broadcasting Zone A (Chukotka, Kamchatka and Sakhalin).

The failure to orbit the satellite will complicate the organization of broadcasting of a local multiplex in the regions, the source said.

The company at present in Chukotka, Kamchatka and Sakhalin organizes broadcasting of the first multiplex, which is localized for another zone, including Khabarovsk. It is not convenient for televiewers because the time of broadcasts is not usual for them. But nevertheless, the main Russian channels in the digital format will be accessible in the regions.

Space Communication, which had ordered the satellite, said the loss was undoubtedly rather serious. The company will be ready to comment on the situation after the official Roscosmos commission's conclusions are known.

Express-MD2 was expected to make up for the loss of the Express-AM4 telecommunication satellite which was launched unsuccessfully in the summer of last year. The capacities of Express-MD2 were believed to be enough to make up for the expenses for Express-AM4, the head of the Federal Communication Agency (Rossvaz), Oleg Dukhovnitsky, said.

Express-MD2 was designed to provide digital television broadcasting and telephone services, multimedia and mobile communication, to transmit data and set up communication networks on the basis of VSAT technologies. The satellite was equipped with fixed antennas to provide communication and broadcasting services for Russia and Asia.

Work is underway to make Expess-AM4R to fully replace Express-AM4, which was lost last year, the agency chief said.

There are no Rossvaz comments so far on the unsuccessful Express-MD2 launch.

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