Press Release

Press Release

Arianespace launch for Asia and India ST-2 and GSAT-8 satellites in orbit

Kourou, May 20, 2011

On Friday, May 20, Arianespace orbited two communications satellites: ST-2 for the operator ST-2 Satellite Ventures Pte Ltd., a joint venture of Singapore Telecommunications Limited (SingTel) and Chunghwa Telecom Company Limited (Chunghwa), and GSAT-8 for the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO).

202nd Ariane launch, 44th success in a row

This latest successful Ariane 5 launch, the third in 2011, once again proves the launcher’s operational capabilities. Ariane 5 handles a complete range of missions, from commercial launches into geostationary orbit to spacecraft launches into special orbits.

This was the 58th launch of an Ariane 5, and the 44th successful launch in a row.

Ariane 5 is the only heavy launcher now on the commercial market capable of simultaneously launching two payloads.

This latest successful launch clearly shows that Arianespace’s launch Service & Solutions continue to set the global standard and guarantee independent access to space for all customers, including national and international space agencies, private operators and governments.

Supporting prestigious operators worldwide

Arianespace offers the launch solutions that best match the requirements of major operators worldwide.

ST-2 is the second satellite launched by Arianespace for SingTel and Chunghwa, following the launch of ST-1 in 1998.

GSAT-8 is the 14th ISRO satellite to be launched by Ariane. Since the launch of the Apple experimental satellite on Flight L03 in 1981, Arianespace has orbited 13 Indian satellites.

ST-2/GSAT-8 mission at a glance

The mission was carried out by an Ariane 5 ECA launcher from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. Liftoff was on Friday, May 20 at 5:38 pm local time in Kourou (4:38 pm in Washington, D.C., 20:38 UT, 10:38 pm in Paris, and on Saturday, May 21 at 2:08 am in Bangalore and at 4:38 am in Taipei and Singapore).

The ST-2 satellite was built by Mitsubishi Electric Company (MELCO) of Japan, using a DS2000 platform, and weighed 5,090 kg at launch. Equipped with Ku-band and C-band transponders, ST-2 will provide IP-based fixed and mobile, voice and data transmission satellite services to businesses, especially direct broadcast TV operators and maritime companies in Asia and the Middle East. It has a design life of 15 years.

GSAT-8, designed, assembled and integrated by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) in Bangalore, southern India, weighed 3,100 kg at launch, and offers a design life exceeding 12 years. It is fitted with 24 Ku-band transponders, and will mainly provide direct-to-home TV broadcast and radio-navigation services. Its coverage zone includes the entire Indian subcontinent.

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