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NBN Co awards satellite station contracts to locals

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NBN Co has selected two local Australian construction companies, Perkins and Cockram, to build ten satellite ground stations for its regional broadband deployment.

Under contracts worth AUD$180 million, West Australian based Perkins will build four satellite transmission centres in WA while Cockram, based in Melbourne, will build six facilities located in New South Wales, Queensland, Tasmania and South Australia.

The 10 satellite ground stations will feature the installation of 13.5 metre ViaSat satellite antennas at each facility.

Construction is slated to start next year with a completion date in 2014 ahead of the 2015 launch of NBN Co’s $2 billion Long Term Satellite Service that will deliver high speed broadband to an estimated 200,000 homes, farms and businesses in rural and remote parts of the country.

The Long Term Satellite Service will aim to provide retail broadband providers with a wholesale speed of up to 12Mbps and access price of $24 per month, matching the basic level of service available on the fibre and wireless networks.

Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy said the ground station construction projects would create up to 300 jobs.

"The awarding of these contracts is another sign the NBN rollout is ramping up across the country. The NBN is on track to have fibre construction commenced or completed for 758,000 homes and businesses by the end of the year," Conroy pledged. &reg

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