European launch provider Arianespace completed the first of seven planned launches of its heavy-lift Ariane 5 rocket this year, delivering two telecommunications satellites into geostationary transfer orbit.
European launch provider Arianespace completed its 11th and final launch of the year Dec. 21, putting satellites for the largest regional operators in Asia and South America on their way to the geostationary arc.
Satellite insurers on Oct. 5 said the Sept. 1 failure of a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket while preparing a static-fire test, which destroyed a $200 million satellite, wiped out 20 years of insurance premiums for prelaunch coverage and will almost surely result in a sharp rate increase.
Japan’s DSN-1 X-band military communications satellite was damaged during transport from Japan to Europe’s Guiana Space Center spaceport in South America and will miss its planned summer launch aboard a European heavy-lift Ariane 5 rocket, also delaying its intended co-passenger, India’s GSAT-18 telecommunications satellite, industry officials said.
Tuesday's rundown begins with news that Arianespace has postponed the launch of two satellites scheduled for June 8.
Thursday's briefing begins with a top U.S. Air Force launch official saying the Pentagon is looking at using Ariane 5 rockets to launch U.S. military satellites as a potential stopgap measure.
Europe’s Ariane 5 heavy-lift rocket on Jan. 27 successfully placed the first of Intelsat’s Epic-generation satellites into transfer orbit, a launch so important for Intelsat that the fleet operator was willing to forgo a co-passenger to secure the earliest possible launch slot.
The satellites — the first of two Sky Muster Ka-band broadband satellites for Australia’s NBN Co. and the Arsat-2 Ku- and C-band telecommunications satellite for Arsat of Argentina — were both reported by their owners to be healthy in orbit and sending signals.
EchoStar will launch a broadband communications satellite on an Atlas, not an Ariane, next year.