Press Release

Lockheed Martin-Built Nimiq 2 Satellite Launched Successfully From Baikonur

By SpaceRef Editor
December 30, 2002
Filed under , ,

The Nimiq 2
telecommunications satellite, designed and built by Lockheed Martin
Commercial Space Systems (LMCSS) for Telesat Canada, was successfully
launched today from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in the Republic of

Lift-off occurred at 3:17 p.m. Sunday Pacific Standard Time (PST)
aboard a Proton M/Breeze M booster provided by International Launch
Services. Initial contact with the satellite, called acquisition of
signal, was confirmed at Lockheed Martin satellite tracking station in
Uralla, Australia, shortly after separation, which occurred at 10:10
p.m. PST.

Nimiq 2, a high power Ku-band satellite, will provide direct
broadcast services across Canada from its final orbital location at 91
degrees West longitude. The spacecraft features 32 active 24 MHz
Ku-band transponders with 120 watt power amplifiers, and also has a
Ka-band payload. Nimiq 2 is an A2100AX satellite, manufactured by
Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems, with a minimum service life
of 12 years. The satellite’s name — chosen from 36,000 submissions in
a national contest in 1998 — is an Inuit word for any object or force
that unites things or binds them together.

Ted Gavrilis, president of Lockheed Martin Commercial Space
Systems, said: “We are pleased with the successful launch of Nimiq 2
and we are especially proud to provide our valued customer – Telesat
Canada – with its second robust A2100 satellite. I commend our entire
team for consistently providing world-class, high-performance
spacecraft at a fast pace, and I look forward to extending our 100
percent mission success record into the New Year.”

The A2100 geosynchronous spacecraft is designed to meet a wide
variety of telecommunications needs ranging from Ka band/broadband
services, fixed satellite services in a Ku-band payload configuration,
to high-power direct broadcast services using the Ku-band frequency
spectrum. The A2100’s modular design features a reduction in parts,
simplifying construction, increasing on-orbit reliability and reducing
weight and cost.

About Telesat (

Telesat is a world leader in satellite operations and systems
management. The company made history in 1972 with the launch of the
first domestic commercial communications satellite in geostationary
orbit. Today, Telesat competes with the world’s leading satellite
fleets in providing telecommunications and broadcast distribution
services throughout the Americas. Telesat is a wholly-owned subsidiary
of BCE Inc., one of the world’s premier communications companies.

About International Launch Services (ILS)

ILS is a joint venture of Lockheed Martin Corp. in the United
States, with Russian companies Khrunichev State Research and
Production Space Center and RSC Energia. ILS provides launch services
on the Proton and the Atlas vehicles to customers worldwide.

About Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems

Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems markets, designs and
builds geostationary and non-geostationary telecommunications and
remote sensing satellites for customers worldwide. LMCSS is an
operating unit of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, one of the
core business areas of the Lockheed Martin Corporation .
Lockheed Martin has a 41-year heritage of building reliable spacecraft
for commercial and military customers, having launched more than 875
spacecraft and clocking nearly 1,500 years of on-orbit performance

NOTE TO EDITORS: Low- and high-resolution JPEG image files of
Nimiq 2 will be available later at the following URL:

To download a video clip of the launch, please visit


     Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems, Sunnyvale
     Steve Tatum, 408/742-7531
     Pager: 888/926-2912
     [email protected]

SpaceRef staff editor.