BAIKONUR COSMODROME, Kazakhstan, June 19, 2007 - While the campaign to launch the DIRECTV 10 satellite in early July is under way here, Khrunichev is preparing another Proton M vehicle for the next commercial mission.
That is the scheduled launch in September of the JCSAT-11 satellite for JSAT Corp. of Japan. This mission will be the third for the year for International Launch Services, a US-based joint venture of which Khrunichev is a partner.
The de-assembled Proton M launch vehicle assigned to the mission was delivered June 16 by rail in separate containers to Kazakhstan's Tyura Tam station from Moscow. The Khrunichev team is conducting off-loading operations.
The offloaded containers will be transported by rail to the Launch Vehicle Assembly and Test Building 92-A50 and installed in Hall 111, where Khrunichev engineers will perform routine assembly and test operations with the first through third stages of the rocket. These operations are expected to be accomplished by July 10.
The Proton Breeze M launch with JCSAT-11 will be the first Proton commercial mission for a Japanese customer. The satellite, an A2100 model, is being developed by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems.
ILS is a joint venture of Space Transport Inc., Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center of Moscow and RSC Energia of Moscow. ILS is incorporated in Delaware in the United States, and is headquartered in McLean, Va., a suburb of Washington, D.C. Formed in 1995, ILS provides a full range of launch services on Russia's premier launch vehicle Proton for customers worldwide. ILS has already performed 40 Proton missions and worked with all global satellite operators.
Excerpted from Khrunichev press release.