Starsem announces today the signing of a contract with MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd (MDA) for the launch of MDA’s RADARSAT-2 Earth observation satellite by a Soyuz launch vehicle.

The launch is planned to take place in December 2006 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The Earth observation satellite will be placed into a Sun Synchronous Orbit, at 798 kilometers altitude.

Starsem is the Soyuz company, bringing together all key players involved in the production, operation and international commercial marketing of the world’s most versatile launch vehicle. Shareholders in Starsem are Arianespace, EADS, the Russian Federal Space Agency and the Samara Space Center. The Starsem manifest for Soyuz missions currently includes contracted launches for the European Space Agency, Eumetsat and Globalstar LLC.