The French space agency CNES has agreed to allocate an additional 10 million euros ($11.7 million) to further the economic and social development of French Guiana, the South American territory home to Europe’s spaceport.
The light-lift Vega rocket is Europe’s vehicle of choice for small satellites, but has mainly launched spacecraft weighing hundreds of kilograms. While that’s smaller than what Arianespace normally launches on an Ariane 5 or Soyuz, it’s not the “small” that people generally think of when they think smallsats.
An Ariane 5 launch has been cancelled after an unexplained problem with an Indian space agency satellite that was supposed to ride on the mission.
Arianespace on April 19 announced a agreement Japan’s Broadcasting Satellite System Corporation BSAT and satellite manufacturer Space Systems Loral to launch the BSAT-4b satellite on an Ariane 5 rocket in 2020.
Spaceflight Industries has secured rideshare opportunities on two Vega rocket missions for tiny satellites.
Arianespace on April 5 launched two satellites for telecom operators that for separate reasons were both more than a year behind their original launch schedules.
A Soyuz rocket from Arianespace successfully delivered four telecommunications satellites into medium Earth orbit for fleet operator SES.
The Ariane 5 rocket that deviated from its expected flight path Jan. 25 and lost contact with ground control was fed the wrong coordinates, according to the independent commission Arianespace tasked last month to find out what caused the close call.
The two satellites that launched Thursday evening on an Ariane 5 are in orbit and communicating with the ground despite a harrowing loss of contact with the rocket a few seconds after its upper stage ignited.
European launch provider Arianespace expects to conduct just 23 more Ariane 5 launches before the next-generation Ariane 6 becomes its primary rocket.
Arianespace completed the company’s tenth launch this year Nov. 7, delivering a Moroccan Earth observation satellite to low-Earth orbit on a Vega rocket.
Brazilian satellite operator Embratel Star One today purchased a multiple-payload telecommunications satellite from Space Systems Loral, reflecting the company’s mixed feelings on adopting high-throughput Ka-band capacity.