McLEAN, Va., and LONDON, 1st July 2008 – Inmarsat plc (LSE: ISAT), the leading
provider of global mobile satellite communications services, today announced that
International Launch Services (ILS) has scheduled its next Proton Breeze M
commercial mission for 14th August (13th August GMT) from the Baikonur
Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, with the launch of the Inmarsat-4 F3 satellite.
The satellite is scheduled to be shipped to Baikonur in early July for a six-week
launch programme. The satellite, an EADS Astrium Eurostar 3000 model, will weigh
approximately 6 metric tons at liftoff, perfectly suited for the Proton Breeze M’s lift
capability. Khrunichev Space Center of Moscow, the majority shareholder in ILS,
manufactures the Proton system.
The Inmarsat-4 F3 satellite will complete Inmarsat’s next-generation global satellite
network, providing broadband MSS services to users everywhere.
This is the first ILS mission since a Breeze M upper stage suffered a failure during
the AMC-14 mission in March. The Proton Breeze M is ready to return to flight now
that a Russian State Commission and an ILS-led independent review panel have
concluded their inquiries into that incident and corrective actions have been
“Having participated in the Failure Review process in its entirety, I am satisfied that
the appropriate actions have been taken to deal with recent failures and to reassess
the quality of the Proton vehicle. Inmarsat now expects to transport the satellite to the
launch site and complete certain other formalities in sufficient time to target the
launch date announced today,” said Gene Jilg, Chief Technology Officer for
”We thank Inmarsat for its support and patience,” said ILS President Frank McKenna.
“We know how important this satellite is for the continued success of Inmarsat’s
growing broadband services, and we look forward to the start of the campaign in the
About ILS and Khrunichev
ILS provides satellite customers with a complete array of services and support, from contract signing through mission management and on-orbit delivery. ILS has exclusive rights to market the Proton, Russia’s premier heavy-lift vehicle, to commercial satellite operators worldwide, as well as the Angara next-generation launcher. ILS is a U.S. company incorporated in Delaware, and headquartered in McLean, Va., a suburb of Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.ilslaunch.com.
Khrunichev, which holds the majority interest in ILS, is one of the cornerstones of the Russian space industry. Khrunichev manufactures the Proton system and is developing the Angara launch system. The Proton launches from facilities at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and has a heritage of more than 330 missions since 1965. Khrunichev includes among its branches a number of key manufacturers of launch vehicle and spacecraft components in Moscow and in other cities of the Russian Federation. For more information, visit www.khrunichev.ru.
Inmarsat plc (LSE: ISAT) is the leading provider of global mobile satellite communications. Since 1979, Inmarsat has been providing reliable voice and high-speed data communications to governments, enterprises and other organisations, with a range of services that can be used on land, at sea or in the air. The company’s services are delivered through a global network of more than 500 distribution partners and service providers operating in 180 countries. For the year ended 31 December 2007, Inmarsat plc had total revenue of US$ 576.5 million. More information can be found at www.inmarsat.com.