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US firm turns over satellite to VNPT

Update: July, 07/2012 - 09:32

HA NOI — US aerospace giant Lockheed Martin has officially handed over the VINASAT-2 to the Viet Nam Post and Telecommunications Group (VNPT), marking the full-fledged management of its second satellite.

VNPT General Director Pham Long Tran said Lockheed Martin's experts had carefully checked, tested and successfully ran the satellite before handing it over to VNPT.

Speaking at the official ceremony held in Ha Noi, Tran said all tests on manoeuvrability, technical parameters and overall quality had met the standards stated in the contracts.

Viet Nam Telecom International (VTI), a VNPT affiliate, will be responsible for operating the sputnik from its Qui Duong ground control base in Ha Noi. It said it would provide telecom services from the satellite, including radio, television and telephone transmission, within this month. Meanwhile, Lockheed Martin said it would continue to support VNPT by sending experts to help operate the satellite.

VINASAT-2 was successfully launched into orbit on May 21 from the Guiana Space Centre at the European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. Fitted with 24 Ku-band transponders, the satellite has a life expectancy of 15 years and follows Viet Nam's first satellite VINASAT-1, launched in April 2008.

According to VNPT calculations, the US$280 million satellite is capable of covering Southeast Asia and some neighbouring countries, and the organisation would see returns on its investment after 10 years of operation.

VNPT in March signed a US$20 million insurance contract for Vinasat-2 with two local insurers, the Post and Telecommunication Joint Stock Insurance Corporation (PTI) and Bao Viet Insurance Group. — VNS

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