The commercial operation of Bangabandhu satellite will start in June next year after the launch in December this year, State Minister for Post and Telecommunications Tarana Halim has said.
“We are certain that the launch will take place in the first or last week of December. It will be able to start the commercial operation in June 2018,” she said.
She said in case of any problem the launch might be deferred to January. “There will be no problem if the weather remains calm in Florida in the US in December.”
The satellite will have 40 transponders. Bangladesh will use 20 of those for its own and the rest will be rented. The government hopes to save $14 million annually on rent the country is now paying to foreign satellites.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina wants to share the joy of sending Bangladesh’s first satellite into space with people through video conferencing from her residence, the Ganabhaban, Tarana said.
The final countdown will begin in Bangladesh a week before the launch which will be broadcast live, she said.
The December schedule for the launch using SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket was announced earlier.
State Minister Tarana Halim recently visited the facility of Franco-Italian aerospace manufacturer Thales Alenia Space in France where the satellite is being built.
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