NigComSat-1R, Nigeria’s only communications satellite will outlive its usefulness by 2026, meaning that the satellite will expire by then. Recall that NigComSat-1, was designed and built by the China Great Wall Industry Corporation (CGWIC) at a cost of $400m.
The satellite (NigComSat-1) which was put in the orbit in May 2007, was de-orbited in November 2008 following the development of power fault. It was replaced in December 2011 with NigComSat-1R by the same company. This NigComSat-1R, Nigeria Communications Satellite Limited, managers of the satellite, has said will expire in the next seven years.
Mr Raji Kolawole, executive director, Engineering Services at NigComSat Limited, at the company’s resellers and channel partners at its Resellers Forum in Abuja, however said that the company was exploring avenues to acquire two more satellites as the government had directed it to explore private sector sources for the funds required for the construction of the additional satellites.
He said if properly utilised, the communications satellite also had the capacity to help the country to check the incidents of kidnapping and terrorism, which had become endemic in recent times.
Kolawole said, “The present satellite has about seven years to the end of life. For business continuity, we are collaborating with the private sector to acquire two additional satellites. “The reason the Federal Government declared NigComSat1R as a national priority project is because of the navigation overly on our satellite, which basically is for security purposes, to curb kidnapping, terrorism and the likes.
“Now at the moment, we are working with security agencies to use the satellite to curb incessant kidnapping around the country.” NigComSat-1R with a lifespan of 15 years, was launched into the orbit on December 19, 2011.