Saturday, September 30, 2017

Ariane 5 Orbits Intelsat 37e and BSAT-4a Satellites

Ariane 5 liftoff on September 29, 2017. Credit: ESA/Arianespace

Ariane 5 has delivered two telecom satellites, Intelsat-37e and BSAT-4a, into their planned orbits. Arianespace announced the liftoff at 21:56 GMT (23:56 CEST, 18:56 local time) on Friday, September 29 from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. The mission lasted about 47 minutes.

Intelsat-37e, with a launch mass of 6,438 kg, was the first to be released after about 29 minutes. The 3,520 kg BSAT-4a was released 18 minutes later.

Intelsat-37e, owned and operated by Intelsat, offers a new generation of fixed and mobile communications for the Americas, Africa and Europe. The satellite has a design life of more than 15 years.

BSAT-4a, operated by Japan’s Broadcasting Satellite System Corporation, will provide direct-to-home television services to Japan in high and ultra-high definition. The satellite has a design life of more than 15 years.

Shortly after the announcement of the orbital injection of the two satellites, Stéphane Israël, CEO of Arianespace, said: “Arianespace is proud to share this fifth successful Ariane 5 launch of the year, its 81st in a row, with our American and Japanese customers. We are very happy with the continuing expression of trust from Intelsat. Just slightly over a year after the dual launch of IS-33e and IS-36, and seven months after the launch of Intelsat-32e/SKY Brasil-1, we have now orbited Intelsat-37e, the most powerful satellite in its Intelsat EpicNG fleet.

The performance requested for this launch was about 10,838 kg. The satellites totaled about 9,958 kg, with payload adapters and carrying structures making up the rest.

This mission follows its previous launch attempt that was halted just before liftoff on 5 September. After solving the anomaly and completing related checks, Arianespace resumed operations for today’s launch.

Flight VA239 was the 95th Ariane 5 mission.

Arianespace has carried out nine launches from the Guiana Space Center to date in 2017 (five by Ariane 5, two by Soyuz and two by Vega). Since the beginning of the year, the company has launched 15 payloads – including 12 into geostationary transfer orbit – totaling 55,440 kg.

Credit: arianespace.comESA

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