McLEAN, Va., March 2, 2004 — International Launch Services (ILS) will provide a Russian Proton rocket to launch the WORLDSAT 3 communications satellite, under a contract with Alcatel Space of Paris announced today.
The launch is targeted for late 2005 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Alcatel Space is building the satellite using its Spacebus 4000 model, and delivering it in orbit for WORLDSAT, a subsidiary of SES AMERICOM. This is ILS' second launch contract directly with Alcatel Space.
"We're pleased in the continued confidence that Alcatel Space has shown in ILS," said Mark Albrecht, ILS president. "We successfully launched AMC-9 last year on Proton for Alcatel Space and SES AMERICOM, and we're teaming again this summer to launch WORLDSAT 2. WORLDSAT 3 will be the fourth Alcatel Space-built satellite we will have launched on Proton."
Albrecht noted the long-standing relationship with ILS and the satellite's end user, SES AMERICOM, and parent company SES GLOBAL. To date ILS has launched 15 satellites for companies affiliated with SES GLOBAL, including six for the SES AMERICOM fleet.
The Proton vehicle, built by Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center of Moscow, is the workhorse of the Russian launchers. It has amassed more than 300 flights over nearly 40 years of Russian federal missions and eight years of commercial flights under the auspices of ILS.
ILS is a joint venture of Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) and Khrunichev. ILS markets and manages commercial missions on the Proton rocket, and commercial and government missions on the Lockheed Martin-built Atlas rocket in the United States. ILS was formed in 1995, and is based in McLean, Va., a suburb of Washington, D.C.