Europe has four more Galileo navigation satellites (satellites 19–22) in the sky following their launch from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana at 18:36 GMT (19:36 CET, 15:36 local time), on an Ariane 5 rocket, operated by Arianespace.
Liftoff of Ariane 5 Flight VA240 from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou
Europe has four more Galileo navigation satellites in the sky following their launch on an Ariane 5 rocket. After today’s success, only one more launch remains before the Galileo constellation is complete and delivering global coverage.
Ariane 5, operated by Arianespace under contract to ESA, lifted off from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana at 18:36 GMT (19:36 CET, 15:36 local time), carrying Galileo satellites 19–22. The first pair of 715 kg satellites was released almost 3 hours 36 minutes after liftoff, while the second pair separated 20 minutes later. Read more…
Macron, Juncker and Wörner visit Europe’s Spaceport
The Galileo global navigation satellite system has been offering initial services since almost a year and the performances are great. Independent measurements and evaluation of the system show that the European system is currently the best satellite positioning system in the world.
A symbolic image of the European Space Port in Kourou (French Guiana) as the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, the French President Emmanuel Macron, and
the Director General of the European Space Agency Jan Wörner, stand in front of the Ariane 5 launcher, which will soon carry 4 more Galileo satellites into space.
On 12 December at 19:36 CET, an Ariane 5 will launch from Kourou with 4 new Galileo satellites, adding to the constellation which is set to be completed next year.
Ariane 5’s fairing is lowering over the payload of four Galileo navigation satellites.
For its 11th launch of the year, and the sixth Ariane 5 liftoff from the Guiana Space Center (CSG) in French Guiana during 2017, Arianespace will orbit four more satellites for the Galileo constellation.
This mission is being performed on behalf of the European Commission under a contract with the European Space Agency (ESA).
For the second time, an Ariane 5 ES version will be used to orbit satellites in Europe’s own satellite navigation system. At the completion of this flight, designated Flight VA240 in Arianespace’s launcher family numbering system, 22 Galileo spacecraft will have been launched by Arianespace with Soyuz and Ariane 5 launchers. Read more…
The next four Galileo satellites are scheduled for launch on 12 December at 18:36 GMT (19:36 CET, 15:36 local time) from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana atop an Ariane 5 rocket.
This launch will bring the total Galileo constellation to 22, boosting the global availability of navigation signals. Galileo began initial services on 15 December 2016, the first step towards full operations.
Media are invited to take part in an audio briefing on 11 December at 16:30 GMT (17:30 CET) to learn the latest on the status of the system Read more…
Ariane 5’s vehicle equipment bay is lowered for installation
The Ariane 5 for Arianespace’s December 12 year-ending flight for 2017 has completed its initial build-up at the Spaceport in French Guiana – where preparations also are moving ahead with four satellite passengers that will further expand Europe’s Galileo global navigation system once in their final orbit.
During activity in the Spaceport’s Launcher Integration Building, this heavy-lift vehicle for Arianespace Flight VA240 underwent the assembly process that began by mating its two solid propellant strap-on boosters with the main cryogenic stage. Read more…
Elements for Arianespace’s Ariane 5 mission in December have been delivered to the Spaceport in French Guiana for the heavy-lift launcher’s second flight at the service of Galileo.
These components arrived on September in French Guiana aboard the MN Colibri, which is one of two sea-going roll-on/roll-off ships that transport launcher hardware from Europe to the South American launch site for Arianespace’s family of launch vehicles. Read more…
Four of the latest set of Galileo navigation satellites will be launched on Ariane 6 rockets – ESA’s first contract to use Europe’s new vehicle.
The launches are scheduled between the end of 2020 and mid-2021, using two Ariane 62 rockets – the configuration of Europe’s next-generation launch vehicle that is best suited to haul the two 750 kg navigation satellites into their orbits at 23 222 km altitude.
Under development, Ariane 6 is Europe’s newest launcher, designed to extend guaranteed access to space for Europe at a competitive price. It will operate in two configurations, depending on customer needs: Ariane 62 is fitted with two strap-on boosters while Ariane 64 has four.
“Ariane 6 is not only in full development, but it will soon be put to use,” notes Daniel Neuenschwander, ESA’s Director of Space Transportation. “This contract is a key step in the upcoming ramp-up phase of Ariane 6.”
The Galileos have so far either been launched in pairs by Soyuz from French Guiana or in fours by Ariane 5.
A new Ariane 5 flight is scheduled for the end of this year (12th December), to add four more satellites to the 18-strong constellation already in orbit. This month saw the arrival of the first elements of the rocket in French Guiana, transported aboard the MN Colibri roll-on/roll-off ship. Read more…