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Thuraya launch delayed for second time

Following technical difficulties the launch of the Thuraya mobile telecomms satellite has been postponed until Saturday.

Sea Launch has rescheduled the blast-off of the Thuraya-1 satellite for a second time.

Originally scheduled to take off on Thursday, and subsequently put back to Friday, the latest take off slot allocated to the launch is Saturday, Oct. 21. The 45-minute launch window will open at 6:07 a.m. Greenwich meantime (10:07 a.m. UAE time).

The first launch was delayed because of an instrumentation issue identified during pre-launch operations. In a statement, Thuraya confirmed that "The Sea Launch team has determined the root cause of the problem and has implemented correction action.

Following system checkout to verify readiness for launch, the countdown will resume for tomorrow launch. All other systems are functioning nominally."

Updates on the launch will be posted on the Thuraya website at www.thuraya.com and Sea Launch website at www.sea-launch.com.

The Sea Launch vehicle will lift the Thuraya-1 mobile telecommunications satellite into geo-synchronous transfer orbit from a floating launch platform on the Equator.

Designed for a 12-year lifespan, the Thuraya-1 satellite will provide more than 1.8 billion subscriber, covering three continents, with telephone, voice mail, Interactive Voice Response, data, fax and GPS.

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