Next Ariane 5 Mission to Orbit 3 Geostationary Satellites
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Dec 8, 2022

Next Ariane 5 Mission to Orbit 3 Geostationary Satellites

  • On December 13, Arianespace will fulfill its 3rd Ariane 5 launch of the year.
  • Flight VA259 will orbit three satellites: MTG-I1, the new generation meteorological satellite of EUMETSAT, developed in cooperation with the European Space Agency (ESA) and manufactured by Thales Alenia Space, and Galaxy 35 and Galaxy 36, two geostationary communications satellites, manufactured by Maxar for Intelsat.

On Tuesday, December 13, 2022 at 5:30 p.m. local time (8:30 p.m. UTC), Arianespace’s next Ariane 5 mission will lift off from Europe’s Spaceport, French Guiana, with MTG-I1 meteorological satellite and Galaxy 35 and Galaxy 36 telecommunications satellites. The mission duration will be 34 minutes and 37 seconds.

The satellites will be launched for two major companies and long-standing Arianespace customers: the European Organization for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites EUMETSAT and the multinational satellite services and communication provider Intelsat.

The Meteosat Third Generation (MTG) system will help meteorologists meet one of their main challenges – the rapid detection and forecasting of severe weather events – so that timely warnings can be given to citizens, civil authorities and first responders. The data from MTG-I1 (I stands for Imager) will have a wide range of uses, from enabling aircraft to avoid storms and for earlier alerts of flooding, through to more precise monitoring of fires and fog. It will help to protect lives, property and infrastructure and bring economic benefits to Europe and Africa. The MTG satellites are developed and procured in cooperation with the European Space Agency by an industrial consortium led by Thales Alenia Space in cooperation with OHB. The satellites are developed according to the requirements defined by EUMETSAT after consultation with the users of its meteorological data.

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Galaxy 35 and Galaxy 36 are the next satellites in Intelsat’s comprehensive Galaxy fleet refresh plan, a new generation of spacecraft that will provide Intelsat Media customers in North America with high-performance media distribution capabilities and unmatched penetration of cable headends. These two satellites will bring C-band contribution capacity to support high-profile events, such as collegiate and professional football, auto racing, baseball, golf, boxing and professional wrestling. The satellites also offer in-orbit protection for select customers in the broadcast arc serving North America.

The launch at a glance:

  • 343rd launch for the Arianespace launcher family (306th launch from CSG).
  • Galaxy 35, Galaxy 36 and MTG-I1 will be the 1146th, 1147th and 1148th satellites launched by Arianespace.
  • 115th launch of Ariane 5 overall.


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