Saturday, 23 June, 2018

Satellite’s ground stations testing begins in Sep

Published on: 11:20 am - Sunday | July 16, 2017

Bangabandhu-1 satellite’s ground stations will be ready for testing from September as 88 percent work of the project has already been completed, said State Minister for Telecom Tarana Halim yesterday.

“We hope to launch the Bangabandhu-1 satellite commercially by April next year, which was earlier scheduled for next June,” she told reporters while visiting one of the stations in Gazipur to oversee the progress made. The other is in Rangamati’s Bethbunia.

She said the ground stations would start holding test runs from October.

Construction of Bangladesh’s first satellite is expected to be completed in November. The launch depends on different factors such as the weather and schedule of the launch from the US.

The government had earlier planned to hold the launch in December from Florida.

French firm Thales Alenia Space is manufacturing the satellite for $248 million (Tk 1,959 crore) under an agreement signed with Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission in November 2015.

The most sophisticated technological project in Bangladesh is costing around Tk 2,967.95 crore. It might come down by a few hundred crore taka, said Tarana in reply to a question.

Tarana said local and foreign companies were being contacted for the sale of half of the satellite’s capacity on connectivity.

There have been positive responses from Indonesia and some local companies, said project officials. The cabinet already passed a proposal for forming a public limited company to look after the satellite’s businesses for the next three years as a local partner of Thales Alenia Space.

The satellite will bring down television broadcasting costs to just one tenth of what is incurred now, said the officials.

It will take seven years to recoup the investment while the project will put Bangladesh on track to become a developed country, said Tarana.

After the launching, the government will go for two more satellites, Bangabandhu-2 and Bangabandhu-3, said the officials.

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