Eutelsat and the Russian Satellite Communications Co (RSCC) are again linking up to further develop the 36 deg East ‘hot spot’ for Russian broadcasting. A ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ was signed in Moscow May 10 by Yuri Prokhorov, Director General of RSCC, and Michel de Rosen, CEO of Eutelsat and, in the presence of Igor Shchegolev, Minister for Communications and Mass Media of the Russian Federation.
The MoU calls for a new satellite to be financed by Eutelsat and launched in 2015. The MoU echoes the original 2000 launch of ‘Sesat 1’ to 36 deg East, and reflecting the long-standing involvement of RSCC in Eutelsat as Russia’s official signatory in what in those days was largely a telco-owned operation. Sesat 1 was replaced in 2010 by Eutelsat W7 which itself doubled resources at the slot.
However, this particular MoU also covers the development of extra capacity aboard the craft and a payload with a footprint over sub-Saharan Africa to provide long-term continuity for services currently available, “and capacity for expansion”.