The first Ariane 5 to be launched in 2015 begins its Spaceport build-up
As Arianespace prepares to close out a busy year of mission activity, the initial Ariane 5 for launch in 2015 already is beginning to take shape at the Spaceport.
This vehicle started its build-up in the dedicated Launcher Integration Building, where the cryogenic core stage was raised into place over one of two mobile launch tables available for the heavy-lift Arianespace workhorse.
To accompany the assembly process, Ariane 5’s two solid propellant boosters were rolled out for their mating with the core stage – clearing the way for continued integration.
The activity is being performed by prime contractor Airbus Defence and Space, which will deliver the Ariane 5 to Arianespace for payload integration, final checkout and launch.
Arianespace is targeting a liftoff next March for the launcher, which is to carry Telenor Satellite Broadcasting’s THOR 7 commercial relay satellite and the Sicral 2 telecommunications platform for Telespazio, on behalf of the French and Italian military forces.
For the mission, THOR 7 is to ride in Ariane 5’s upper passenger position, with Sicral 2 located below it in the SYLDA dispenser system. Designated Flight VA222, this launch will be the 222nd liftoff of an Ariane family vehicle from the Spaceport.