Third Vega launch by Arianespace a success: KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR) satellite in orbit
On Tuesday, April 29 at 10:35 pm local time in French Guiana, Arianespace successfully launched the third Vega launcher from the Guiana Space Center (CSG), orbiting the KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR) satellite for the government of Kazakhstan within the scope of a turnkey contract with Airbus Defence and Space.
Third successful Vega launch from CSG
With Ariane 5, Soyuz and Vega all operated from the Guiana Space Center, Arianespace is the only launch services operator in the world capable of launching all types of payloads into all orbits, from the largest to the smallest geostationary satellites, clusters of satellites for constellations and missions to the International Space Station (ISS).
Vega is designed to launch small satellites into low Earth orbit (LEO) or Sun-synchronous orbit (SSO). It should quickly prove to be the benchmark launcher in its class, especially on the emerging market for Earth observation satellites.
Following this third Vega launch, Arianespace now has a backlog of 10 satellites to be launched, half of them commercial launches in export markets for government agencies. To meet growing demand, Arianespace signed a tripartite agreement with the European Space Agency (ESA), and ELV, the industrial prime contractor for Vega, on November 20, 2013. The agreement provides for the procurement of 10 additional launchers, in addition to the three already under production as part of ESA’s VERTA (VEga Research and Technology Accompaniment) program, thus covering identified launch requirements until 2019.
Arianespace and the Earth observation market
With this latest successful launch, Arianespace is continuing its contribution to spaceborne systems supporting sustainable development, only three weeks after the launch of Sentinel-1A, by a Soyuz launcher, the first satellite in the European Commission’s Copernicus program.
KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR) is the 51st satellite with an Earth observation payload to be launched by Arianespace, whose launch manifest includes ten more EO satellites, which will use all three launchers in its family.
Following this successful mission, Arianespace Chairman and CEO Stéphane Israël said: “First, I would like to congratulate and thank the Kazakhstan space agency, KazCosmos, whose ambitious space program makes a huge step forward today with the launch of the country’s first Earth observation satellite. My congratulations also go to Airbus Defence and Space, a long-standing Arianespace partner, which has demonstrated outstanding technical control over this high-resolution satellite program, while meeting all deadlines. And kudos to ESA as well, which acted as contracting authority for the launcher, and to ELV, the joint venture between the Italian space agency and Avio, which is industrial prime contractor for Vega, on this latest successful mission, the third since 2012. Last but not least, my thanks go to everybody involved in Vega operations at the Guiana Space Center, under the direction of Arianespace, for their all-out commitment to the success of this mission. Thanks to the availability of our launchers and the commitment of the base, tonight’s launch comes in the midst of an extremely busy year, with four launches in four months so far, in line with our very ambitious operational schedule for 2014!”
The Vega KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR) mission at a glance
The Vega launcher lifted off from the Vega launch complex (SLV) at the Guiana Space Center in French Guiana at 10:35:15 pm (local time) on Tuesday, April 29, 2014 (9:35:15 pm in Washington, DC, and on Wednesday, April 30 at 01:35:15 UTC, 3:35:15 am in Paris, and 7:35:15 am in Astana, Kazakhstan).
The KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR) satellite
KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR) is a high-resolution optical observation satellite that weighed 830 kg at launch. It will provide Kazakhstan with a wide range of civilian applications, including monitoring of natural and agricultural resources, mapping data and support for search & rescue operations during natural disasters.
The KazEOSat-1 (DZZ-HR)satellite was built by Airbus Defence and Space in Toulouse, and offers a design life of 7.25 years. It is the 108th payload built by Airbus Defence and Space (or predecessors) to be launched by Arianespace.