Lockheed-Martin: good news, and bad

Chris Forrester

Lockheed Martinís JCSAT-12 satellite is ready for launch on a giant Ariane 5 rocket on August 21. JCSAT-12 is for Sky-Perfect Japan. But Lockheedís more downbeat news is that it will lay off 800 workers before the end of the year.

JCSAT-12 is a 42-transponder craft (30 in Ku and 12 in C-band) and will beam TV signals over Japan, the Asia-Pacific region and including Hawaii. It is the 38th A2100 model satellite and the 5th to be supplied to JCSAT. Launch window for Ariane on the 21st opens at 6.09pm EDT and closes at 7.09pm EDT.

Closer to home, Lockheed Martinís staff reductions will affect its Sunnyvale, California, and Denver, Colorado, facilities. The 800 staff represents about 4.5% of their employees, and will affect technical, managerial and admin positions. Some of the cuts are a direct result of NASAís cut-backs on the Space Shuttle program, effective next year.