Skip to content

ILS President's Letter: March 2010

Date of News Item: 
March 15, 2010

 

Last Year – Performance is Key
Last year was a remarkable year for ILS and Khrunichev with an incredible production and  launch rate of 7 commercial and three Federal missions and our ability to integrate, manage and successfully launch in record time the AsiaSat 5 and W7 missions.

Khrunichev successfully demonstrated the Proton Phase III capability addressing our primary focus on the heavy lift market.  This added capability underscores Proton’s flexibility and translates to real value for our customers. Additionally, we have utilized this capability to offer Proton “Duo” designed to lower launch costs in the lighter satellite market with the launch of two Orbital satellites, for a single customer. 

Lastly, 11 new contract announcements maintained our contract base for new missions with our customers, now, yielding 22 missions in firm backlog.

Looking Ahead: Another Year of Performance Already Underway
And this year is continuing at the same pace, with three Protons already launched to date, including two Federal missions. We will launch another commercial mission just a few days from now with the EchoStar XIV satellite. This will be the largest commercial satellite to be launched on ILS Proton at over 6.3 metric tons for EchoStar and Dish Network, and the first commercial launch utilizing the enhanced capabilities of Phase III Proton.
 
We anticipate that 7-8 commercial missions will launch this year, as well as, 3-5 Federal missions.

New Announcements for ILS
Last month, we announced a paired mission with the SES-3 satellite for SES and the Kazsat-2 satellite.  This shared launch provides an alternative in the market that previously did not exist, and continues to demonstrate Proton’s ability to launch multiple spacecraft.   It is also one of five SES missions scheduled to launch on ILS Proton in 2010-11, another strong indication of customer confidence and support.

Today, we announced two firm missions for Intelsat, with the Intelsat 21 and 23 satellites.  This follows the successful launch of the first ILS Proton mission of the year with Intelsat, with the Intelsat 16 satellite on February 12, 2010. 

A Sustainable Business; Ready to Support a Variety of Missions
We can attribute our incredible launch rate to the increased production capabilities and quality in the factory.  With 12-14 systems produced annually, this speaks directly to the benefits of a consolidated Proton supply base under a unified Khrunichev management team.  As well, the Quality measures that were initiated in the spring of 2008 are now in place and showing results.  With 20 consecutive successful Proton launches in 20 months, (12 commercial and 8 Federal missions)—this launch pace is simply unmatched in the industry.

As we take on new competitive thrusts to create value for our customers, ILS is continually building a strong customer, operational

and financial foundation. Following the disciplined approach that we have employed over the last several years, we are actively engaging a variety of customers and missions for the commercial sector and the civil government to create even more value.

The collective ILS and Khrunichev team is a high performing group of individuals that thrive off of the success of our customers. We very much look forward to providing the best value for each and every mission.

 

Frank McKenna
President, International Launch Services

Connect with ILS

Facebook Twitter YouTube Linkedin