- Dec 8, 2007
Question?? How come all of these are lauched from someplace other than the U.S? Is this because of location or is it competitive bidding?
Money. The US is abolutely non-competitive, the French have a site in South America close to the equator but has limited use because of costs, and Sea Launch (US west coast assembly site) went bankrupt and just got back into business. Meanwhile , the Russians set up an assembly line and went for low prices to get market share. Their problem is their launch site in the far north and the satellite has to use up a significant amount of it's fuel to move the orbit inclination from 51 degrees to 0 degress. If things were to start over, the French or Sea Launch would have a good change of getting the volume they need to be competitive but now they have to chip away at the Russian market share.