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Israel’s Spacecom Struggling To Come Up With AMOS-8 Deposit For Space Systems Loral

Image courtesy of Spacecom.

Israel’s Spacecom has again extended the time period it needs to raise funds for its initial deposit for U.S. Satellite manufacturer SpaceSystems/Loral (SSL) to build its AMOS-8 satellite, but the process – and payment — has been mired in delays.

Most notable is the impending decision by the Israeli government to have Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) build an alternative satellite, which could then be used for all government business, freezing Spacecom and Amos-8 out of the process and much needed business needed for the company’s long-term survival.

It has been reported that Spacecom told the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange that it and SSL had agreed to another postponement of the deposit until 25 September 2018. The order for AMOS-8, initiated in March 2018 for a satellite to be launched by 2020, is worth U.S.$112 million.

With the initial payment originally due in May 2018, Spacecom first postponed it for 30 days while it waited for information from the Israeli government about its decision to order its own satellite from Israel Aerospace Industries, which it intended to place at a slot (4 degrees West) owned by Israel but previously occupied by Spacecom.

AMOS-8 is planned to replace the short-term lease of AMOS-7 that is currently contracted from Hong Kong-based Asiasat at an annual cost of U.S.$22 million.

Spacecom has been anticipating that AMOS-8, its orbital slot, and key government business would help return it to profitability after a series of problems in recent years.

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#SpaceWatchGL Opinion: Say YES to diversity and gender equality in the space sector: a look at the Diversity and Gender Equality Project Group of the SGAC

Diversity is difficult to measure and quantify, given all the aspects and shapes it takes, yet it is easy to witness and observe the lack of it in many fields including the space sector. If the space sector and all its disciplines should be used to help improve life on earth and observe it (amongst other purposes), shouldn't it be represented by all terrestrial individuals equally? In an ideal world, yes! But history and social biases have prevented our progress towards this perfect world, and we find ourselves today with a space sector still dominated by cis white-male individuals.