Mission Update

Mission Update

Eutelsat's W2M spacecraft begins final preparations for the Ariane 5 launch on December 20

December 8, 2008

Integration of the Eutelsat W2M satellite for its upcoming Ariane 5 launch moved into a new phase today with this spacecraft’s installation on the cone-shaped adapter system that serves as its interface with the heavy-lift launch vehicle.

Our photo report from French Guiana details the process, which occurred in the Spaceport’s state-of-the-art S5 payload preparation center.  (Click on the images for a larger version):

This overhead photo shows W2M during its transfer inside the S5 payload preparation facility, as it moves from the S5C large preparation hall to the S5A fueling and integration hall.  Such transfers occur in clean room conditions, using internal transfer corridors that are 12 meters high and eight meters wide, and which run the length of the S5 facility.  These corridors allow for quick and safe movement of spacecraft as they progress through their various pre-launch preparation phases.

The W2M satellite is transported on a pallet that is easily controlled by a single launch team member during its movement through the S5 facility.  W2M was developed by a European-Indian alliance of EADS Astrium and ANTRIX (the commercial arm of the Indian Space Research Organisation), and will have a liftoff mass of 3,460 kg.  The spacecraft will be positioned at an orbital slot of 16 deg. East following its Ariane 5 launch on December 20, providing television and radio broadcasting services for the European-based Eutelsat telecommunications operator.

W2M is lowered onto the interface adapter in the S5A integration hall.  The satellite’s broadcast coverage area will be across Europe, and it also carries a steerable beam that can be re-oriented according to market requirements.    This spacecraft will be launched by Ariane 5 together with another Eutelsat satellite – HOT BIRD™ 9, which is to relay digital and new high-definition TV channels, as well as interactive services.




About Arianespace | Launch services | Latest news | Press center | Careers | Contact us | Site map
RSS | Français | Terms and conditions of use | Online privacy statement | Twitter | |

© 2015 Arianespace