Kourou, November 26, 2001 — Arianespace today successfully orbited the
DIRECTV-4S direct broadcast satellite for American operator DIRECTV, Inc.

Flight 146 is Arianespace’s third launch for DIRECTV, Inc., the leading
provider of digital television programming in the United States. Previous
Ariane missions carried the DIRECTV-1 spacecraft in December 1993 (on Flight
62) and DIRECTV-3 in June 1995 (Flight 74).

DIRECTV-4S is a multi-beam satellite, which means that DIRECTV can deliver
more real local TV broadcasting, which until now has been limited to local
cable or broadcast networks. It also is the 45th satellite built by Boeing
Satellite Systems to be launched by Arianespace.

Upcoming launches

Ariane 4: The next launch is scheduled for January 16, 2002. An Ariane 42L
version of the Ariane 4 family will orbit the Insat 3C communications
satellite for ISRO (Indian Space Research Organisation), the Indian space

Ariane 5: The work leading to a resumption of launches is proceeding
methodically. A major step forward was taken on November 10 with the start
of testing of Ariane 5’s Aestus upper stage engine on a modified test stand
to simulate ignition conditions at altitude. The aim of this test series is
to investigate engine ignition in a wide range of operating conditions.
Early next month, these tests will enable the definition of modifications
that will be applied to flight-standard Aestus engines.

Based on this schedule and with the results already obtained, the Ariane 5
launch of the Envisat satellite is now planned for the first few weeks of

Following Flight 146, Arianespace’s backlog now stands at 40 satellites to
be launched, plus 9 ATV missions for the International Space Station.

Flight 146 at a glance

The 65th successful Ariane 4 launch in a row

Flight 146 was performed from Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana
with an Ariane 44LP – the version of the Ariane 4 launcher equipped with two
solid and two liquid-propellant strap-on boosters. Liftoff was on November
26, 2001 at 9:35 p.m. local time (7:35 p.m. in Washington, D.C., and on
November 27 at 00H35 GMT and 1:35 a.m. in Paris).

Provisional parameters at third stage injection were:

Perigee: 199.8 km for a target of 199.7 km (±3 km)

Apogee: 35,972 km for a target of 35,989 km (±150 km)

Inclination: 7.00 degrees for a target of 7.00 degrees (±0.06°)

The DIRECTV-4S satellite

Built by Boeing Satellite Systems in El Segundo, California, DIRECTV-4S will
be positioned at 101 degrees West. It will give viewers throughout the
United States a wide variety of local TV programming. Weighing 4,300 kg. at
liftoff, DIRECTV-4S is equipped with 48 high-power Ku-band transponders, 38
for direct transmission to regional stations using digital compression and
10 others for general coverage of the United States. Its design life is 15