Astrium and Space Systems/Loral have begun 2002 with contracts to build satellites for Japan and Spain.

Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) has won a deal from Japan's Mobile Broadcasting Satellite to construct the MBSAT digital multimedia information services communications satellite to be launched in 2003. The SS/L 1300 series 7.5kW (10.1hp) spacecraft will be equipped with S- and Ku-band transponders.

Spain's Hipsasat satellite communications company has chosen Europe's Astrium to build the Amazonas 1 communications satellite to be launched in 2004. The36-Ku band, 19-C band transponder spacecraft will be located at 61ºW in geostationary orbit.

The 9.5kW craft, with a lifetime of 15 years, will be based on a Eurostar E3000 bus, and weigh 4.5t. The construction of the satellite and its launch have been budgeted at $213 million, with a further $67 million for a control station in Brazil.

Source: Flight International