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FACT CHECK: Disinformation on Palapa B2 Satellite Purchased by California Company


Merdeka.com – Information on the Palapa B2 satellite purchased by the company Sattel Technologies (California) circulated on social media. The information spreader wrote that the Palapa B2 satellite was sold while the satellite was in orbit.

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This is Astronaut Dale Gardner holding a “For Sale” sign. A tone of sarcasm for the Palapa B2 satellite because it was purchased by the Sattel Technologies (California) company from the Indonesian Government when this satellite was in orbit

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Check the facts merdeka.com traces this information. As a result, the information is incorrect.

In a turnbackhoax article entitled “[SALAH] The picture “This is the Story of the 1984 Indonesian Satellite Tragedy PALAPA B2” on November 29, 2021, explained that the Palapa B2 satellite was sold because it failed to orbit.

The Palapa B2 satellite is the second satellite or plan B of satellite B1 which was launched on June 18, 1983 via the STS Challenger aircraft from Cape Canaveral. However, the Palapa B2 satellite in its launch failed on February 3, 1984. This satellite did not reach orbit due to damage to the perigee kick motor.

A satellite project costs a lot and has a very large risk factor, therefore it is necessary to carry out insurance activities. Likewise, the Palapa B2 satellite is also covered by insurance. When the launch failed, the insurer paid a launch insurance claim of US$.75,000,000 to the Indonesian government and it automatically became theirs.

Then the insurance company sold the B2 satellite and it was purchased by Sattel Technologies (California) while it was in orbit, then contracted with NASA to retrieve it. Sattel also contracted with Hughes Aircraft Company (original manufacturer) and McDonnell Douglas (launch service provider) to be updated and repaired. After repairs the B2 satellite was bought back by Perumtel (Indonesia) which had concluded an agreement with McDonnell Douglas to launch the B2-R palapa satellite (changed name from B2 to B2-R (Recovery)) using a commercial version of the McDonnell Douglas Delta II rocket which was successfully launched in April 1990 from Cape Canaveral, United States.

Conclusion

The news that the California company purchased the Palapa B2 satellite while in orbit is disinformation. The Palapa B2 satellite failed to orbit due to damage. The insurance company that handles the Palapa B2 satellite has to pay US$.75 million to the Indonesian government and it automatically becomes theirs. Only then the satellite was purchased by a California company.

Don’t be easy to believe and check every information you get, make sure it comes from a trusted source, so it can be justified. [lia]

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