WASHINGTON — An Ariane 5 ECA rocket successfully launched telecommunications satellites for operators serving Japan and Australia Aug. 21 from Europe’s Guiana Space Center in French Guiana, launch services provider Arianespace said.

The 4,000-kilogram JCSAT-12 satellite, built by Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems for Sky Perfect JSat Corp. of Tokyo, carries 30 Ku- and 12 C-band transponders, and is designed to operate 15 years. It will provide broadcast and broadband services in Japan, Oceania, the Asia-Pacific region and Hawaii, and initially will serve as a backup for other Sky Perfect JSat satellites, Lockheed Martin said in a press release.

The Optus D3 satellite was built by Orbital Sciences Corp. for SingTel Optus of Singapore and Australia and weighed 2,500 kilograms at launch. It will provide television broadcasting services in Australia and New Zealand over the next 15 years.

The launch was the fourth of the Ariane 5 this year and the 32nd consecutive success for the European vehicle, Arianespace of Evry, France, said.

Warren Ferster is the Editor-in-Chief of SpaceNews and is responsible for all the news and editorial coverage in the weekly newspaper, the spacenews.com Web site and variety of specialty publications such as show dailies. He manages a staff of seven reporters...