International Launch Services (ILS) will launch the Nimiq 6 telecommunications satellite for Ottawa-based Telesat in mid-2012 aboard a Russian-built Proton rocket, the companies announced in a March 17 press release.

Nimiq 6, under construction by Space Systems/Loral of Palo Alto, Calif., carries 32 transponders and will operate at 91 degrees west longitude, the press release said.

Canadian broadcaster Bell TV has leased all of the capacity aboard the satellite, a Loral 1300 model, for its full 15-year contractual lifetime.

ILS of McLean, Va., markets the Proton vehicle, which is manufactured by Khrunichev State Research and Space Production Center of Moscow. Khrunichev is the majority owner of ILS.