Arianespace will orbit the Sicral 2 military telecommunications satellite
Telespazio (Finmeccanica/Thales) has chosen Arianespace to launch the Sicral 2 satellite in the framework of a turnkey contract that the Italian Defense Ministry and the French DGA armament agency (Direction Générale de l’Armement) have with Thales Alenia Space Italy.
Arianespace today announced that it has signed a service & solutions launch contract with Telespazio to orbit the new-generation Sicral 2 military telecommunications satellite as of November 2013.
With a liftoff mass of approximately 4,400 kg., Sicral 2 will be placed in a geostationary transfer orbit by an Ariane 5 launched from the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.
Sicral 2 will provide strategic and tactical telecommunications links for the French and Italian military forces, operating from an orbital slot of 37 degrees East. In addition, the satellite will offer reserve telecommunications capacity for other NATO countries.
Sicral 2 will be developed and integrated by Thales Alenia Space, based on the Spacebus 4000 satellite platform. Thales Alenia Space is also responsible for the Mission Control Center to be installed in Italy and in France. Telespazio is responsible for the Satellite Control System in Italy and Interconnection, launch service management and operations for the satellite’s orbital positioning, commissioning and in orbit test.
“Sicral 2 is the 36th military payload to have chosen an Ariane launch,” said Jean-Yves Le Gall, the Chairman and CEO of Arianespace. “This latest contract clearly illustrates the strategic facet of Ariane 5, which guarantees independent access to space for all European governments. The Ariane 5 launcher is one of the keys to the development of a common European security policy, since it plays a pivotal role in the indispensable space segment.”
Since the beginning of the year, Arianespace has signed 11 launch contracts for geostationary satellites, along with six dedicated Soyuz launches.
Arianespace is the world’s leading launch Service & Solutions company, providing innovation to its customers since 1980. Backed by 24 shareholders and the European Space Agency, Arianespace offers an unrivalled family of launchers, comprising Ariane 5, Soyuz and Vega, and an international workforce renowned for a culture of commitment and excellence. As of December 01, Arianespace had launched a total of 287 payloads, including more than half of all the commercial satellites now in service worldwide. It has a backlog of 21 Ariane 5 and 17 Soyuz launches, equal to more than three years of business.