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Wednesday, January 05, 2011

NigComSAT 1R: China reassures on completion date

Remmy Nweke:

Rising from the sixth Quarterly Management Review (QMR) meeting in Abuja at the weekend, officials of Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT) and China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC) have said the Nigeria Satellite 1 replacement (NigComSat-1R) will be delivered on schedule.

Disclosing this to ITRealms Online Managing Director of NigComSAT, Mr. Timasaniyu Ahmed-Rufai, said that with the major performance requirement tests already accomplished, activities leading to the launch of NigComSat 1R, are now in high gear.

ITRealms Online recalls that NigComSAT and top officials of Federal Ministry of Finance and China Academy of Space Technology (CAST), Beijing, met recently in China.

He disclosed that the project has entered an advance stage of Assembly and Integration Test (AIT) of the platform and payload components, an indication that the project is very much on course for the delivery at the last quarter of 2011.

The spacecraft, he said, would be operated on geo-stationary orbit of 42.5 degrees; and will provide 14 Ku-band active channels, 4 C-band active channels, 8 Ka-band and 2 navigational channels.

Ahmed-Rufai assured that with the launch of NigComSat-1R, Nigerians will be able to enjoy affordable broadband and multimedia services.

He also pointed out that despite the arrival of fibre on the shores of Nigeria; satellite is still needed to transmit from landing point in Lagos to other parts of the country.

Additionally, he said, NIGCOMSAT is already preparing a Direct-To-Home (DTH) platform which will be ready before the launch of NigComSat-1R, thus paving way for local DTH companies to leverage on.

He also said that rising from the sixth Quarterly Management Review (QMR) meeting in Abuja recently, officials of both firms pledged to deliver the project on schedule.

The NIGCOMSAT’s Project Manager, Mr. Abdulraheem Adajah, led the Nigerian team to the meeting while the China Great Wall team was led by Chief Engineer, Mr. Hu Gang.

Worthy of note is that Venezuela recently celebrated the second anniversary of VENESAT-1, a Dong Fang Hong (DFH-4) platform, for digital telecommunications and broadcasting. The performance of the satellite is said to have been very good. It was built and launched by China Great Wall.

Apart from aforementioned, Venezuela, no fewer than four communications satellites are due for launch in the next few months ahead of NigComSat-1R.

China Great Wall recently signed a contract with Bolivia to deliver a communications satellite on the DFH-4 platform too. This is an indication that Nigeria has nothing to worry about.

He quoted the China Great Wall officials as explaining in Abuja during the QMR that extra precautionary measures and quality control measures are being taken to ensure that nothing is left to chance in order to deliver a robust and high performance satellite.

One of the features of NigComSat-1R is the newly introduced Asian beam meant for content trunking and service delivery to Asia, Europe and Africa.

The spacecraft will be operated on geo-stationary orbit of 42.5*E; and will provide 14 Ku-band active channels, 4 C-band active channels, 8 Ka-band and 2 navigational channels.

Ahmed-Rufai assured that with the launch of NigComSat-1R, Nigerians will be able to enjoy affordable broadband and multimedia services.

He also pointed out that despite the arrival of fibre on the shores of Nigeria; satellite is still needed to transmit from landing point in Lagos to other parts of the country.

Indeed, he said NIGCOMSAT is already preparing a Direct-To-Home (DTH) platform which will be ready before the launch of NigComSat-1R, thus paving way for local DTH companies to emerge.

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