Bangladesh has ordered its first Bangladeshi owned communications satellite from the European satellite maker Thales Alenia Space to be positioned in the Geostationary orbital arc.  Bangabandhu-1 will weigh in at 3,500kg and will be launched under a construction and launch contract with the firm valued at US$248 million. The deal, which also covers elements of the ground segment including the control centre has reportedly been backed with loan guarantees from the French export-credit agency, Coface.  The launch, probably on an Ariane 5 ECA, will take place in late 2017.

Thales Alenia Space made the announcement on 11 November 2015 it had signed a contract with BTRC (Bangladesh Telecommunication. Regulatory Commission) to build the telecommunications satellite, Bangabandhu, after winning a competition against an international field of competitors.

Artist's impression of Bangabandu-1. Courtesy: Thales Alenia Space

Artist’s impression of Bangabandu-1. Courtesy: Thales Alenia Space

Built on the upgraded Spacebus 4000B2 platform, Bangabandhu will be fitted with 26 Ku-Band and 14 C-Band transponders. The satellite’s coverage zone encompasses the Bangladesh and the surrounding region. This system will offer capacity in Ku-Band over Bangladesh and its territorial waters of the Bay of Bengal, India, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, Philippines and Indonesia; it will also provide capacity in C-Band over the whole region.

 According to Space News, the satellite will use the 119.1 degrees East position leased from the international Intersputnik organization of Moscow under a 15-year lease costingUAS$27.5 million.