NYTIMES AMC-23 report

From: George Olshevsky (george.olshevsky@gmail.com)
Date: Sat Dec 31 2005 - 12:29:51 EST

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    Here is the New York Times report on the launch of AMC-23 (2005-052),
    which seems to be the final launch of 2005. Happy new year, everybody!
    Russia Launches Communications Satellite
    Published: December 29, 2005
    Filed at 8:09 p.m. ET
    MOSCOW (AP) -- A Russian booster rocket carrying a U.S.
    telecommunications satellite blasted into space Thursday after a
    series of delays, the Federal Space Agency said.
    The Proton-M rocket carrying the AMC-23, or WorldSat-3, satellite
    lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at about 5 a.m.
    The satellite, owned by Princeton, New Jersey-based Ses Americon Inc.,
    will serve customers across the Pacific region, including western
    North America, East Asia, the South Pacific, Alaska and Hawaii, and
    provide links to the world's premier regional satellite systems.
    The launch was postponed several times because of flaws in the booster
    rocket. The booster was built by the Khrunichev company, Russia's
    premier rocket manufacturer but has suffered a series of embarrassing
    launch failures that led to the ouster of its chief executive by
    Russian President Vladimir Putin last month.
    The loss of a high-profile European satellite was among a series of
    mishaps in October blamed on Khrunichev that jeopardized Russia's
    hopes of earning foreign cash from launching foreign commercial
    The loss of the estimated $142 million CryoSat satellite because of
    the failure of a Russian Rokot booster was a major blow to the
    European Space Agency, which hoped to conduct a three-year mapping of
    polar ice caps and provide more reliable data on global warming.
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