2018-05-10 18:27:01 BdST

BTV to telecast live satellite launchBangabandhu-1 set to fly tonight


Country’s first ever satellite Bangabandhu-1 is set to fly to space in the early hours of Friday from Kennedy Space Center of the United States.

While talking over phone from Florida, Telecommunication Regulatory Commission Chairman Shahjahan Mahmood told media that all tests are positive and it will be launched tonight.

SpaceX has set May 10 from 4:12pm to 6:22pm (Florida time) for the launch of Bangabandhu-1, which is 2:12am to 4:22am Friday in Bangladesh.

Meanwhile, the authority of the Kennedy Space Centre has invited visitors to witness the launching of Bangabandhu-1, the first commercial satellite of Bangladesh.

After getting the invitation; a 30-member delegation, including State Minister for Information Tarana Halim and State Minister for ICT Zunaid Ahmed Palak flew off to Florida to witness the launch of Bangabandhu-1.

Launch viewing opportunities for Bangabandhu-1 are available at Apollo/Saturn V Center, approximately 3.9 miles/6.27 kilometers from launch pad, and main visitor complex, approximately 7.5 miles/ 12 kilometers from launch pad, both included with daily admission.

State-owned Bangladesh Television (BTV) has taken initiative to broadcast the launching of Bangabandhu-1, country’s first commercial satellite, early Friday.

“Bangladesh Television will telecast the launching of the country’s first and lone satellite Bangabandhu-1 using Live Streaming technology through an IPTV from Florida,” S.M. Haroon-or-Rashid, Director General of BTV said on Wednesday.

In association and technical assistance from the Ministry of Posts, Telecommunications and Information Technology and Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC), the programme will be covered, the DG said.

This historic event can also be watched live on different YouTube channels as well as Facebook.

The 3.7-tonne satellite, built by Thales Alenia Space, a France-based satellite company, was supposed to be launched in December. But the date has been deferred several times due to inclement weather and technical reasons.

According to an official statement of Kenedy Space Center, a Falcon-9 rocket will deliver Bangabandhu-1 to a geostationary transfer orbit.

“This is the first time SpaceX is launching the Block 5 version of the Falcon 9 rocket,” it said.

Bangladesh is going to be the 57th country in space once Bangabandhu-1 is launched.

Currently, Bangladesh meets its demand for satellite connectivity by renting bandwidth from foreign operators which costs the country about $14 million a year. Once launched, Bangabandhu-1 will save the foreign currency expenditures.

It will also improve the Direct to Home (D2H) services, making people's access to worldwide TV entertainment faster and easier.

Bangabandhu-1 will have 40 transponders and three of them would be used for broadcasting TV channels.

The country's remote parts -- haors, coastal areas and deep-sea zones -- will also have impressive internet connectivity. It will also be helpful for distance learning, treatment and improvement of weather forecast facilities.

The satellite will be a game changer in rescue operations after natural disasters.

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