1st Japanese company to use Russian vehicle

JSAT Corporation of Japan has contracted with International Launch Services (ILS) for launch of its JCSAT-11 satellite on a Proton Breeze M vehicle in 2007. The companies announced the deal today at the Satellite 2006 conference in Washington, D.C. Financial terms were not disclosed.

This will be JSAT’s fourth mission with ILS, and its first on a Proton, which launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Previous flights, all successful, were on ILS Atlas vehicles from Cape Canaveral, Fla. ILS, a Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) joint venture, markets launch services on the Proton, built by Khrunichev of Russia, and the Lockheed Martin-built Atlas, to satellite operators worldwide.

“ILS has been a launch partner with JSAT since 1995,” said ILS President Mark Albrecht. “We appreciate JSAT’s confidence that the Proton Breeze M will be as reliable as the Atlas vehicles that launched the JCSAT 3, 4 and 6 satellites.”

Proton vehicles launched seven times in 2005, four times with ILS commercial missions and three times for the Russian government. The Proton Breeze M configuration has a 100 percent success rate in 13 missions.

JCSAT-11 is an A2100 model satellite built by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems. ILS Proton vehicles have launched eight of this model already, “and we’ll be welcoming the Lockheed Martin spacecraft team back to Baikonur four more times in the next two years, including for JCSAT-11,” Albrecht said.

Kiyoshi Isozaki, president and CEO of JSAT Corporation, said: “We chose the ILS Proton because it has the demonstrated reliability and launch tempo that JSAT established as criteria for the JCSAT-11 program. It is important for our company’s business plan to launch JCSAT-11 in 2007 in order to enhance the security and versatility of our satellite system. We are pleased with the substantial flexibility ILS offers us. We are also honored to become the first Japanese satellite operator to ride on a Russian-built vehicle.”

JSAT Corporation is a leading satellite operator in the Asia-Pacific region. The company owns and operates nine satellites in eight orbital slots, covering North America, Hawaii, Asia and Oceania. JSAT provides a range of services, including digital CS broadcasting service, SKY PerfecTV! satellite TV broadcasting, video and data broadcasting services for corporate and inter-company networks and international telecommunications services.

International Launch Services is the global leader in the space launch industry, offering the two best systems: Atlas and Proton. With a remarkable launch tempo, the Atlas and Proton vehicles have consistently demonstrated the reliability and flexibility that have made them the preferred choice among satellite operators worldwide. ILS was formed in 1995, and is based in McLean, Va., a suburb of Washington, D.C.

Lockheed Martin, headquartered in Bethesda, Md., employs about 135,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2005 sales of $37.2 billion.

Contact: Fran Slimmer, International Launch Services, McLean, Va.; 1-571-633-7462; mobile: 1-646-229-4801; fran.slimmer@lmco.com.