On December 15, 2004, Nigeria's National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and CGWIC signed the NigcomSat-1 communications satellite in-orbit delivery contract in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria.
On May 14, 2007, NigComSat-1 was successfully launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center (XSLC) aboard an enhanced LM-3B (LM-3B/E) launch vehicle. On July 6, 2007, CGWIC delivered the NigComSat-1 satellite in orbit to Nigerian CommunicationS Satellite Ltd. (NigComSat Ltd.), along with a tracking station in Kashi of China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region and one fully operational ground station in Abuja, Nigeria. A 15-year operational support service and a comprehensive training program have also been provided as part of the contract. NigComSat-1 was China's first commercial in-orbit delivery telecommunications satellite.
On November 11, 2008, NigComSat-1 failed in orbit after running out of power due to solar array anomaly.
On March 24, 2009, the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, NigComSat Ltd. and CGWIC sighed the NigcomSat-1R satellite in-orbit delivery contract. NigComSat-1R is also a DFH-4 satellite, and is expected to be delivered in 2011 as a replacement for the failed NigComSat-1.
The NigcomSat-1 is equipped with 28 transponders on board in four (4) frequency bands ( 8 Ka-band, 14 Ku-band, 4C-band and 2 L-band) . In order to satisfy the complicated coverage area requirements, the satellite is fitted with a total of seven shaped communication antennae. With a lift-off mass of 5,086kg, the NigcomSat-1 satellite will be positioned at 42 degrees east longitude over the equator, with an end-of-life power of over 8KW, and a design orbit life span of 15 years.