On March 31, at 08:22 local time, Kazakhstan lost contact with its KazSat-2 satellite, which provides communications services for local broadcasters and Internet companies, reported Eurasianet.
The national space agency, KazCosmos, said in a statement that the satellite was used by 13 telecommunications and broadcasting operators. For a nerve-wracking seven hours, all data previously being handled by the satellite was rerouted to KazSat-3.
Officials have not reveald what caused the malfunction. But this development is refocusing attention on Kazakhstan’s space program, and seems certain to cause renewed unease over the decision by KazCosmos to stick by its choice of Russia’s Khrunichev Center to develop KazSat-2, following the grim fate of KazSat-1.
Renting slots on foreign satellites is a costly proposition for Kazakhstan’s telecommunications providers and broadcasters, so efforts to develop domestic capabilities, first announced in the mid-2000s, were broadly welcomed.
Check out Satellites KazSat
See also History of KazSat