European launch provider Arianespace has established new launch dates in May and June for an Ariane 5 and a Soyuz mission that were delayed by four weeks of civil unrest in French Guiana.
The mission, flight VA236, is carrying two communications satellites and was originally scheduled for mid-March.
An agreement between France and its restive South American territory French Guiana, home to Europe’s spaceport, has resolved a month-long dispute that had prevented any launch activity since mid-March.
The European Commission will commit to buying at least five Ariane 6 and two Vega C launches per year when both rockets are in operation, Elzbieta Bienkowska, the European Commission’s lead space commissioner, said Wednesday.
The head of the French space agency expects launch activity will resume soon at the European spaceport in French Guiana, where political protests have grounded Arianespace launches for the past two weeks.
Protests roiling the South American home of Europe’s primary spaceport prompted Airbus Defence and Space to send Europe’s first high-power, all-electric satellite back to France until Arianespace resumes launches.
Strikes pushed back the launch several times last week, and unrest is escalating as 27 unions plan a general strike today in the French overseas holding.
WASHINGTON — An Ariane 5 launch already twice delayed by French Guiana labor unrest was put on indefinite hold Thursday as protests shut down roads, schools and municipal buildings in the South American territory that hosts Europe’s main sp…
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.
A French reusable rocket engine program is getting a boost from the European Space Agency, which is ready to sign a contract with Airbus Safran Launchers that would lead to an engine test three years from now.
Two commercial satellite operators, Intelsat of Luxembourg and Japan-based Sky Perfect JSAT, have committed future spacecraft to launching on Ariane 5 rockets, European launch provider Arianespace said Jan. 4.
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.
Facing looming regulatory deadlines, Inmarsat announced Dec. 8 it was moving the long-delayed launch of a satellite to provide aeronautical broadband services from SpaceX to Arianespace.
Satellite fleet operator Eutelsat has paid its Russian counterpart, Russian Satellite Communications Co. (RCSS), monies overdue on a multi-year contract valued more than 400 million euros ($424 million) despite an ongoing legal battle between the Russian government and the shareholders of the former Yukos oil company.
The Russian space agency, Roscosmos, on Oct. 21 gave written warning to the French government that it would take France to court in six months unless France’s Arianespace launch-service company frees up about 300 million euros ($330 million) in long-overdue payments.
Europe’s Arianespace launch-service provider — the only one of the three principal commercial launch operators not grounded by rocket problems — might be able to add a supplemental heavy-lift Ariane 5 vehicle to its 2017 manifest if market conditions demand it, Arianespace Chief Executive Stephane Israel said Sept. 8.