She spoke at a press conference on the progress of the launch at the secretariat on Monday.
“We are certain that the launch will take place in the first or last week of December. It will be able to start the commercial operation in June, 2018,” she said.
She said in case of any problem the launch might be deferred to January. “There will be no problem if the weather remains calm in Florida in the US in December.”
The satellite will have 40 transponders. Bangladesh will use 20 of those for its own and the rest will be rented. The government hopes to save $14 million annually on rent the country is now paying to foreign satellites.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina wants to share the joy of sending Bangladesh’s first satellite into space with people through video conferencing from her residence, the Ganabhaban, Tarana said.
The final countdown will begin in Bangladesh a week before the launch which will be broadcast live, she said.
The December schedule for the launch using SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket was announced earlier.
State Minister Tarana recently visited the facility of Franco-Italian aerospace manufacturer Thales Alenia Space in France where the satellite is being built.
Tarana said some tests on initial performance, vacuum, final performance, and final preparation would be conducted before the launch.
“They (Thales Alenia Space) said it would be possible to finish the end-to-end test in the first week of December,” she added.