The West did not take us seriously, says Supreme SAT head

Lanka launches first satellite in China today

Supreme SAT, a partnership between the Supreme Group Sri Lanka and China Great Wall Industry Corporation, will launch the country’s first space satellite today (22) offering DTH (Direct Home TV) services.

The French built satellite would be launched from Xi Chang Launch Centre in China and is the first of three with launches scheduled for June 2013 and December 2015.

"When we made our initial efforts to design, manufacture and launch a satellite owned by us, none of the western manufacturers took us seriously. With the raised capital and firm plans in place, it was still an uphill task to find the suitable partner who would be willing to offer us the technology support. This is when we contacted the Chinese state owned China Great Wall Industry Corporation," R.M. Manivannan, Chairman Supreme SAT, said in a statement released by Board of Investments (BOI) of Sri Lanka yesterday (21).

In addition to the launches of the three satellites, the project will lead to the construction of a space station/ space academy on 10 acres of land that are located within the BOI Export Processing Zone at Pallekele. The value of the station is US$ 20 million. This facility’s main role will be the controlling of satellites while a space academy will conduct on-the-job training for Sri Lankan scientists in this new field. This project also offers opportunities for providing services to other countries and Supreme SAT have already began discussions of co-operating with Afghanistan, the BOI said.

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