On the same day of Sea Launch’s most recent launch failure event which lost the Intelsat 27 spacecraft, on 1 February, Boeing filed a lawsuit against the firms RSC Enegria and Yuznoye at the US District Court in Los Angeles demanding the payment of $356 million. Boeing alleges it is owed the money according to agreement it made with its Sea Launch partners during the setting up of the joint firm which noted that should the firm fail or be restructured, Boeing woud be paid its part of its investment back.
Sea Launch command ship in front of Odyssey launch pad. Courtesy: Sea Launch
For several years the firm has been struggling to make its operation work under the extra costs involved in regularly having to move its converted oil rig launch pad Odyssey to an equatorial position in the Pacific Ocean.
The final straw came when the cash strapped firm fell into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2009 after it found it could not pay an arbitration award of $52 million to Hughes Network Systems for a launch fee refund. Hughes Network Systems felt forced to move its launch of its Spaceway 3 satellite from Sea Launch ...