The W-3-A costs about Euro 250 million. This is a very expensive spacecraft; its insurance costs are particularly high because the new-generation W-3-A has never been launched before, International Launch Services (ILS) executive vice-president Leonard (Len) Dest said.
The ILS joint venture comprises Lockheed-Martin of the United States, as well as its Russian partners, i.e. the Khrunichev spacecraft center and the Energia space-rocket corporation.
This satellite belongs to the Eutelsat company of France. As of today, the W-3-A is the largest and most sophisticated satellite among other Eutelsat spacecraft catering to such big-league clients as Volkswagen and the Italian civil-aviation administration, Eutelsat managing director Julian Beretta said.
In his words, the W-3-A's throughput capacity exceeds that of previous satellite types by 100 percent. The W-3-A has 38 Ku-range transponders, as well as two Ka-range transponders.
The W-3-A communications satellite, which was assembled by the Astrium company, will relay live TV broadcasts, also providing direct Internet access for private clients. The W-3-A, which features the state-of-the-art Eurostar-3000 platform, will cover Europe, the Middle East, North-East Africa and Turkey.