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Sea Launch to start rocket to put Intelsat-21 into orbit

August 19, 2012, 8:44 UTC+3

The launch is due on Sunday at 10:55 Moscow time from the Odyssey floating platform in the Pacific Ocean

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LOS ANGELES, August 19 (Itar-Tass) — The Sea Launch company, where the majority share is owned by Russia’s Energia, will launch a Zenit-ZSL missile to put an Intelsat-21 communications satellite into the geosynchronous orbit of the Earth. The launch is due on Sunday at 10:55 Moscow time from the Odyssey floating platform in the Pacific Ocean.

Originally, the launch was scheduled for August 18. However, due to equipment failure it was postponed for a day.

Intelsat-21 manufactured by American Boeing is designed to operate for 15 years. The device replaces on the orbit Intelsat-9, and will provide direct satellite communication for residents in Latin America.

Zenit-ZSL consists of the upper stage Zenit-2S block produced at Ukraine’s Yuzhmash /Dnepropetrovsk/ design bureau and of a DM-SL block of Russia’s Energia Rocket and Space Corporation.

In 2010, Sea Launch and Intelsat signed an agreement on five launches. According to the agreement, in September of the past year, the company took to the orbit the Atlantic Bird communication satellite of Eutelsat European Company. The satellite was the 31st in a row and 29th in successful implementation of the Sea Launch programme.

A company with the same name was established in 1995 with participation of American Boeing, Russian Energia, Norwegian Kvyarner and Ukrainian Yuzhnoye and Yuzhmash. It was the first ever international commercial project for development and operation of a sea-based space-rocket complex. In 2010, Sea Launch reorganised its activities, and Russia’s Energy Overseas Limited /subsidiary of Energia/ received 95 percent of shares, three percent were given to U.S. Boeing aerospace corporation and two – to Aker Solutions, a Norwegian shipbuilding company.

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