ISLAMABAD, Aug 11: Pakistan’s communications satellite, Paksat-1R, was launched on Thursday by China’s Satellite Launch Vehicle from the Xichang Satellite Launch Centre in Sichuan province.
A press release issued here said Defence Secretary Lt-Gen (retd) Syed Athar Ali, Foreign Affairs Secretary Salman Bashir, Strategic Plans Division’s director-general Lt-Gen (retd) Khalid Ahmed Kidwai and Ambassador to China Masood Khan witnessed the launch.
The satellite successfully separated from the carrier rocket and entered geostationary transfer orbit as scheduled, 26 minutes after the launch.
Paksat-1R has 30 transponders, 12 in C-band and 18 in Ku-band.
The satellite will be deployed at 380E in the geostationary orbit and it will replace the Paksat-1.It has a design life of 15 years and will provide TV broadcasting, Internet and data communications services in South and Central Asia, Eastern Europe, East Africa and the Far East.
Pakistani engineers worked closely with their Chinese counterparts during all stages of development of the satellite in China. Some experimental units developed at Suparco were integrated for technology evaluation.—Agencies
Our Staff Reporter adds: President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani felicitated the nation on the successful launch of the satellite.
In a message, the president and the prime minister said the launch was an historic occasion as it placed Pakistan in the league of nations owning and operating communications satellites.
The president congratulated Suparco and all those whose combined efforts have made the successful launch possible. “They have done the nation proud,” he said.