April 26, 2015

64th straight success for Ariane 5

Sunday 26 April, Ariane 5 completed a flawless launch from Europe’s spaceport at the Guiana Space Centre, orbiting two telecommunication satellites, THOR-7 for Norwegian operator Telenor Satellite Broadcasting (TSBc) and SICRAL 2, a joint French-Italian military communications satellite. The flight marked the European launcher’s 64th straight success since 2003.

With a launch mass of nearly 4.6 tonnes, THOR-7 is a telecommunications satellite built by Space Systems/Loral that will deliver television broadcast services to Central and Eastern Europe, and broadband communications for the maritime industry. THOR-7 has an expected service lifetime of 15 years.

With a launch mass of more than 4.4 tonnes, SICRAL-2 is the second French-Italian joint military satellite after Athena-Fidus launched in 2014. During its 15-year service lifetime, SICRAL-2 will deliver strategic and tactical missions for French and Italian forces, while also providing reserve telecommunications capacity for other NATO nations.

At the launch, CNES President Jean-Yves Le Gall commented: “I would like to congratulate all the teams involved in accomplishing this latest launch for Ariane 5, the first this year: those at ESA and Arianespace, at the French defence procurement agency DGA, at the Italian Ministry of Defence, across Europe’s space industry and of course CNES’s teams at the Launch Vehicles Directorate and the Guiana Space Centre.”
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Contacts
Pascale Bresson Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 75 39 pascale.bresson@cnes.fr
Alain Delrieu Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 74 04 alain.delrieu@cnes.fr
Julien Watelet Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 78 37 julien.watelet@cnes.fr
Press office Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 76 88 cnes-presse@cnes.fr

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