Sea Launch's Bejmuk Receives Lloyd V. Berkner Award

Bohdan "Bo" Bejmuk, vice president and general manager of the Sea Launch HomePort facility in Long Beach, Calif., is the 1999 recipient of the Lloyd V. Berkner Award. The award is given annually by the American Astronautical Society for outstanding contributions to the commercial use of space technology.

Since joining Sea Launch in 1997, Bejmuk has managed the international Sea Launch team located at the HomePort facility and has overseen its day-to-day operations. Bejmuk also provided oversight toward the building and preparation of the uniquely crafted Sea Launch vessels used to conduct commercial launches of telecommunications satellites from an equatorial launch site in the Pacific Ocean.

"Receiving this award is a tremendous honor to be shared by every member of the Sea Launch team around the world," Bejmuk said. "Their teamwork and commitment to excellence has made this a truly remarkable year for international cooperation, the commercial space industry and for all of us at Sea Launch. We are very grateful."

Sea Launch's demonstration launch on March 27, 1999, and successful first commercial launch of the DIRECTV 1-R broadcast satellite on October 9, 1999, validated the company's launch system concept and demonstrated overall system operability. The DIRECTV 1-R flight also made space history by becoming the first commercial satellite to be launched from a floating platform at sea.

The Sea Launch global partnership includes Boeing Commercial Space Company, Kent, Wash., (provides spacecraft integration and the payload fairings); Kvaerner Maritime a.s. of Oslo, Norway (the vessel builder); RSC Energia of Moscow, Russia (provides the Block-DM upper stage and its integration with the launch vehicle); and KB Yuzhnoye/PO Yuzhmash of Ukraine (provides the first two stages of the launch vehicle and launch support operations).

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Terrance Scott