Ariane 5 ECA rockets will launch two satellites made by Thales Alenia Space for Gazprom, Arianespace announced.

The communications satellites, Yamal-401 and Yamal-402, will be orbited in the second half of 2011.

Thales Alenia Space will build these two satellites using Spacebus 4000C3 platforms. Offering a design life exceeding 15 years, the two satellites will provide fixed communications and television transmission services.

Yamal-401 will weigh 4,900 kg (5.401 tons) at launch, and will be equipped with 36 Ku-band and 17 C-band transponders. It will be positioned at 90 degrees East.

Yamal-402, weighing 4,800 kg (5.291 tons) at launch, will have 46 Ku-band transponders and be positioned at 55 degrees East.