A state commission on Thursday approved the readiness of a Proton-M carrier rocket for the launch of a U.S. telecoms satellite, Russia’s Federal Space Agency Roscosmos said.
The launch of the Proton-M, which is to carry the Intelsat-22 satellite, has been scheduled for March 25 from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan under a contract concluded by International Launch Services Inc. (ILS).
“The state commission has decided that the Proton-M launch vehicle, Briz-M booster and Intelsat-22 satellite are ready to be transported to the launch pad,” Roscosmos said in a statement. “The start of the operation has been set for 04.30 a.m. Moscow time [00:30 GMT] on March 23.”
Intelsat-22 has been built by Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems for Intelsat Ltd., which operates the world's most extensive satellite network, comprising over 50 satellites.
The satellite is equipped with 48 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders and will provide telecommunications services to customers in Africa, South-East Asia, and the Middle East.
Intelsat-22 also carries UHF payload under a $167-mln contract with the Australian Defense Ministry.
It will be the 10th Intelsat satellite launched on a ILS Proton carrier rocket.