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Update: No Second Life, After All
26 March 2012 5:39 pm
On Sunday, Russian engineers intentionally crashed the Express-AM4, despite the efforts of Polar Broadband Systems Ltd., who had hoped to salvage the spacecraft to support broadband communication in Antarctica. The company had appealed to the Russian space agency, Roscosmos, as well as to Russian officials, requesting an intervention by the Russian ambassador to the United States, but to no avail.
Engineers at Astrium, which designed the spacecraft, fired its engines to begin a controlled descent at 6:33 a.m. EDT on 25 March; the debris landed a few hours later in the northern Pacific Ocean. Russia has ordered a replacement satellite for launch by late 2013.