Arianespace today successfully launched two commercial satellites:
EurobirdTM for the European Eutelsat telecommunications organization, and
BSAT-2a for the Japanese Broadcasting Satellite System Corporation in a
turnkey contract with Orbital Sciences Corporation of the U.S.

Serving two loyal customers : Eutelsat and B-SAT
This latest successful flight confirms the technical and operational
maturity of Europe’s Ariane 5, which is now widely recognized as the
reference heavy-lift launch vehicle in the global space industry.
The mission’s EurobirdTM payload was the 14th satellite launched for
Eutelsat by Ariane. Arianespace has two more Eutelsat satellites on its

BSAT-2a was the third satellite to be orbited by Arianespace for the
Japanese Broadcasting Satellite System Corporation, following BSAT-1a on
Flight 95 and BSAT-1b on Flight 108. It also is the 15th Japanese satellite
launched by Ariane. Out of 24 commercial satellite launch contracts open for
competitive bid in Japan, Arianespace has won 18. A second satellite,
BSAT-2b, is scheduled for launch mid-2001.

Upcoming launches

Arianespace’s next launch, Flight 141, is planned for early June. An Ariane
4 vehicle (Ariane 44L version) will orbit the Intelsat 901 communications
satellite for the Intelsat international telecommunications organization.
Before the end of the year 3 more Ariane 4s and 4 Ariane 5s are slated for
Following the Flight 140 success, Arianespace’s backlog now stands at 36
satellites to be launched, plus 9 ATV missions for the International Space

Flight 140: technical data

Flight 140 was Arianespace’s third launch of 2001, and the first Ariane 5
mission of the year.
Liftoff from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana was at 7:51 p.m.
local time (22H51 GMT; 11:51 p.m. in Paris, 5:51 p.m. in Washington, DC, and
on March 9 at 7:51 am in Tokyo).

Provisional parameters for Flight 140’s accuracy at third stage injection
into geostationary transfer orbit were:

Orbital parameters

Actual Target

Perigee 863 km. 863 km. (±4)

Apogee 36,032 km. 35,986 km. (±260)

Inclination 2.02 degrees 2.00 (±0.07 degrees)

The Flight 140 satellites : EurobirdTM and BSAT-2a

Eutelsat’s EurobirdTM satellite was built by Alcatel Space in Cannes,
France, and will be positioned at 28.5 degrees East. It will join the
Eutelsat fleet to provide telecommunications services for Europe, North
Africa and the Middle East. Weighing 3,050 kg. at liftoff, Eurobird is
fitted with 24 Ku-band transponders and has a design life exceeding 12

BSAT-2a was built by Orbital Sciences Corporation in Dulles (Virginia, USA)
for the Japanese Broadcasting Satellite System Corporation, and it weighed
1,317 kg. at launch. It carries 4 Ku-band transponders and will offer direct
TV broadcast services throughout Japan from the satellite’s orbital position
of 110 degrees East. BSAT-2a has a design life of more than 10 years.
Currently, more than 16 million Japanese households receive programs
broadcast by the BSAT-1a and BSAT-1b spacecraft.