EUTELSAT 21B and Star One C3 are prepared for November launch of Ariane 5

Ariane Flight VA210

The two satellite passengers to be carried on Arianespace’s Flight VA210 – the sixth Ariane 5 mission of 2012 from French Guiana – are undergoing checkout at the Spaceport for their November 9 liftoff.

Orbital Sciences Corporation’s Star One C3 spacecraft for Brazilian communications service provider Star One S.A. has begun its pre-launch processing in the S5 payload preparation facility, joining the Thales Alenia Space-built EUTELSAT 21B for Europe’s Eutelsat Communications – which currently is being fueled.

EUTELSAT 21B will have a liftoff mass of five metric tons, carrying 40 Ku-band transponders on its Spacebus 4000 platform.  To operate at Eutelsat’s 21.5° East orbital position, the satellite will enable Eutelsat to boost capacity at this orbital slot by almost 50 percent – providing relay services for telephone companies, enterprises and government administrations in Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia. 

Star One C3 is based on Orbital’s GEOStar™ bus, and is to weigh in at under 3,200 kg.  It is fitted with a hybrid payload to provide C- and Ku-band communications for the South American region.

Arianespace’s five Ariane 5 missions conducted to date in 2012 from French Guiana have orbited eight satellites and one Automated Transfer Vehicle for servicing of the International Space Station. 

In addition to these heavy-lift flights, the company performed one medium-lift Soyuz mission so far this year from the Spaceport, lofting a pair of Galileo navigation system IOV (In-Orbit Validation) spacecraft, while a Soyuz launch conducted by Arianespace’s Starsem affiliate from Kazakhstan’s Baikonur Cosmodrome deployed the Metop-B weather satellite.

Adding to the 2012 activity was Arianespace’s support for the successful qualification launch of its light-lift Vega vehicle from French Guiana, with this maiden mission performed under responsibility of the European Space Agency.

Source: Arianespace
Date: Oct 24, 2012