Algeria's first telecoms satellite launched

Al SatThe satellite aims to support television broadcasting and broadband communications services in Algeria. (Image source: stantontcady/Flickr)Algeria has launched Alcomsat-1 by China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC) aboard a Long March 3B rocket, which is expected to support television broadcasting and broadband communications for services including remote education and e-government

As described by the CGWIC, the 5,225-kg satellite carries a 33-transponder payload that is comprised of 19 in Ku-band, 12 in Ka-band and two in L-band.

The Alcomsat-1, which has a design life of about 15 years, will be operated by the Algerian Space Agency (ASAL).

Apart from building the satellite, CGWIC also provided the launch vehicle, sidestepping manufacturing and rocket restrictions which can be seen in many other commercial telecom satellites.

According to CGWIC, the launch of Alcomsat-1 is seen to be a good beginning of space cooperation between China and Algeria. The company further stressed that more space programmes are considered to be initiated in a short period of time.

China Satcom, Chinese satellite operator, assisted in Alcomsat-1 programme including frequency coordination, defining the system and gauging user needs.

CGWIC also built and launched telecommunications satellites for Belarus, Laos and Bolivia. The company received two commercial orders, one with Thaicom and one for an Indonesian joint venture, in the past 14 months.

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