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Russia puts into operation 2 new telecoms satellites

April 22, 2014, 16:30 UTC+3 MOSCOW
“Satellite communications enables to distribute television and radio programs in a prompt and qualitative manner,” the Russian Ministry of Communications and Mass Media says
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Express-AT1 was launched jointly with Express-AT2 from the Baikonur space center by a Russian Proton-M rocket

Express-AT1 was launched jointly with Express-AT2 from the Baikonur space center by a Russian Proton-M rocket

© ITAR-TASS/Oleg Urusov

MOSCOW, April 22. /ITAR-TASS/. New Russian telecommunication satellites Express-AM5 and Express-AT1, which are currently in orbit and recently completed the necessary flight tests, were put into operation on Tuesday, the Russian Ministry of Communications and Mass Media said in a statement.

“Satellite communications enables to distribute television and radio programs in a prompt and qualitative manner and grants people access to other important services such as broadband access to internet, distance learning and telemedicine,” the statement quoted Nikolai Nikiforov, the head of the ministry, as saying.

Express-AM5 satellite was launched from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan on December 26, 2013 and put into orbit on December 27. It is intended for carrying digital television and radio signals across Russia, providing mobile presidential and government communication services, offering multi-service packages and supporting VSAT networks. It was designed to operate for 15 years.

Express-AT1 was launched jointly with Express-AT2 also from the Baikonur space center by a Russian Proton-M rocket, powered by a Briz-M booster, on March 16.

Both Express-AT1 and Express-AT2 satellites were designed by Krasnoyarsk-based Reshetnev Information Satellite Systems (RISS).

RISS reported last week that the satellites completed all flight tests. Express-AT1 and Express-AT2 satellites have life spans of 15 years and were designed to serve the eastern and western parts of Russia with up-to-date telecommunications services, including television broadcasting and data transmission.

The new satellites will supplement the orbital constellation of RISS-made spacecraft. As of April 2014, the orbital constellation comprises 82 satellites, of which 51 satellites are in designated use.

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