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Astrium ships Express AM4 satellite to launch site


Record beating satellite for Russian operator RSCC • Most powerful Eurostar E3000 built by Astrium teaming with Khrunichev • Largest Express satellite ever to serve major governmental and commercial interests for the Russian federation • 50th Eurostar satellite to orbit

Toulouse, – The Express AM4 satellite, designed and manufactured by Astrium teaming with Khrunichev for RSCC, has left Astrium’s facility in Toulouse, where it had undergone its final integration and test campaign. Express AM4 will now be transported by a Russian Antonov aircraft to Baikonur, Kazakhstan, in preparation for its launch by a Khrunichev Proton Breeze M vehicle in August 2011.

Express AM4, to be positioned at 80°E, is the largest Express satellite ever ordered by national Russian operator RSCC. This telecommunications satellite is built in the frame of a partnership between the European spacecraft manufacturer Astrium and the Russian company Khrunichev Space Center.

RSCC is focused primarily on the development of satellite communications for fixed and broadcast services in the Russian Federation to secure the common information network across the country. RSCC currently operates 11 satellites from 14°W to 140°E in geostationary orbit, and is currently looking for high power satellites to complement its existing fleet and fulfil growing needs for satellite capacity. Express AM4 is the first and major milestone in this ambitious programme.

Express AM4 is based on the highly successful Astrium’s Eurostar E3000 satellite design. The satellite will be delivered in orbit by Khrunichev Space Center using the Proton launch vehicle. Launch and Early Orbit Phase operations will be conducted from the Astrium spacecraft control centre in Toulouse.

Express AM4 has a 63 active transponders communications payload operating in L, C, Ku and Ka bands for its planned 15-year service life in orbit. Its twelve antennas will provide high performance coverage over the Russian Federation and the CIS countries and its steerable antennas can be used to provide communication to any point within the satellite’s visibility. With an electrical power of more than 16 kW, Express AM4 is the most powerful satellite ever built in Europe.

Express AM4 will become the 50th Eurostar satellite to reach geostationary orbit, with Astrium’s Eurostar series having accumulated more than 400 years of successful in-orbit operations.

About Astrium

Astrium is the number one company in Europe for space technologies and a wholly owned subsidiary of EADS, dedicated to providing civil and defence space systems and services.

In 2010, Astrium had a turnover of €5 billion and more than 15,000 employees worldwide, mainly in France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Spain and the Netherlands. Its three main areas of activity are Astrium Space Transportation for launchers and orbital infrastructure, Astrium Satellites for spacecraft and ground segment, and Astrium Services for comprehensive end-to-end solutions covering secure and commercial satcoms and networks, high security satellite communications equipment, bespoke geo-information and navigation services worldwide.

EADS is a global leader in aerospace, defence and related services. In 2010, the Group – comprising Airbus, Astrium, Cassidian and Eurocopter – generated revenues of € 45.8 billion and employed a workforce of nearly 122,000.


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