Israel successfully launches $250m Amos-17 satellite
Israel has successfully launched its communications satellite from Florida, Spacecom, the company that operates the satellite.
A statement by Spacecom said that SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted the satellite, Amos-17, into space on Wednesday from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
Amos-17 was deployed some 33 minutes after liftoff, Sapcecom said.
It maintains constant contact with the ground station and started its three-week journey towards its designated orbit in space.
Upon arrival, a series of three-month-long checks would begin before the satellite could become operational.
The $250 million satellite is expected to provide communications services to Africa, the Middle East, and Europe through the next 15 years.
Israeli Communication Minister, David Amsalem, hailed the successful launch as “an Israeli pride.”
According to him, “It strengthens Israel’s international position in the field of communications satellites.”
The launch came amidst weather concerns over a lightning storm and heavy clouds.
In 2016, Spacecom lost Amos-6 after a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket exploded on the launchpad.
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