The first ever Angolan satellite to be launched is no longer operational. Confirmation of the news came via a press conference in Luanda with the Angolan Minister of Telecommunications and Information Technologies, Jose Carvalho da Rocha.
Angosat-1 was the first Angolan geostationary satellite to be launched. Built in 2012, following an agreement signed between Angola and Russia in 2009, Angosat-1 cost more than 300 million U.S. dollars and was intended to have a 15 year life span.
SpaceWatch reported, at the end of December, that the satellite had re-established contact with its ground station in Luanda after losing contact shortly after its launch which took place on 26 December on a Zenit rocket from Baikonour. At the time, contact was confirmed by ANGOP (Agencia Angola Press) via a telephone call with the Secretary of State for Telecommunications and Information technology, Manual Homan. Homan said that it was normal for such an event to happen shortly after a satellite launch and that Angosat-1’s committed technicians had successfully made contact.
AngoSat-1 featured C- and Ku-bands on 44 transponders, and was intended primarily to broadcast satellite television. A mission control headquarters and associated infrastructure is located on the outskirts of Luanda, the capital of Angola.
Jose Carvalho da Rocha did however announce the manufacture of a new satellite that is expected to be ready within one and a half years. More news on the new satellite and its capabilities will follow.