The Amos 4 communications satellite, built by Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) (TASE: ARSP.B1) for Spacecom Satellite Communications Ltd. (TASE:SCC), was launched at 11:05 pm Saturday, Israel time. The launch used a Russian Zenit rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The launch will be completed Sunday morning, when the satellite separates from the launcher's final stage.
After the separation, the Amos 4 satellite will continue on its trajectory for two weeks to reach its designated orbital position at 67.25 degrees East at an altitude of 36,000 kilometers. The satellite will operate at this node for several months, during which in-orbit tests will be conducted. Afterwards, it will move to its orbital position at 65 degrees East where it will operate commercially.
Spacecom CEO David Pollack said, "The company congratulates IAI for the achievement in building the Amos 4. With the Amos 4, Spacecom continues its rapid expansion to new continents and large markets, becoming a regional international player for the provision of satellite communications services in the global market."
IAI CEO Joseph Weiss said, "The Amos 4 is at the forefront of technology, on a level with the world's leading satellite communications. This is an impressive achievement for IAI, which is the leader and chief contractor for all of Israel's satellite programs. The development and manufacture of the satellite by IAI's skilled and dedicated employees is an exceptional achievement for us in aerospace."
Minister of Science and Technology Yaakov Perry, who watched the launch of the Amos 4 from a secure facility in central Israel together with Israeli aerospace industry officials, said, "In the digital and satellite eras, aerospace and cyber are critical issues for Israel's security. This is a source of true pride for Israel. It once again demonstrates that for Israeli technology, the skies are no longer the limit."
Perry added, "The Israel Space Agency is greatly expanding its activity, and the launch of the satellite is another milestone on the path that Israel has embarked on - joining the five leading countries in aerospace."
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on September 1, 2013
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