ILS Proton To Launch Mexsat-1 Satellite

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PARIS — An International Launch Services (ILS) Proton rocket will launch Mexico’s Mexsat-1 mobile communications satellite in 2013 or 2014 under a contract announced March 9 by Reston, Va.-based ILS.

Under the contract, with Mexico’s Ministry of Communications and Transportation, an ILS Proton will place the 5,800-kilogram Mexsat-1 into geostationary transfer orbit, from where it will migrate to its operating position at 113 degrees west longitude.

Mexsat is a 702 HP design built by Boeing Space and Intelligence Systems of El Segundo, Calif., as part of a three-satellite contract with the Mexican government. Boeing is also manufacturing a nearly identical Mexsat-2, and has hired Orbital Sciences Corp. of Dulles, Va., to build a third, smaller satellite under the same contract.

Mexsat-1 will feature a 22-meter unfurlable L-band antenna in addition to a 2-meter-diameter Ku-band antenna.