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Ariane 5 July 1, 2011

Final countdown underway for Arianespace’s launch with ASTRA 1N and BSAT-3c/JCSAT-110R

Ariane 5 is shown in the ELA-3 launch zone at the Spaceport, with the two propellant feed arms for its cryogenic upper stage extending from the umbilical mast.

The Ariane 5 launch for two key Arianespace international customers has entered its final countdown for a sunset liftoff today from the Spaceport in French Guiana.

This mission will loft the ASTRA 1N and BSAT-3c/JCSAT-110R satellites, delivering a total payload performance into geostationary transfer orbit estimated at 9,095 kg., which includes 8,240 kg. for the two passengers.

ASTRA 1N is to be deployed first during the flight, released from the upper position of Ariane 5’s dual-payload “stack” at 27 minutes after liftoff, followed 11 minutes later by BSAT-3c/JCSAT-110R.

Built by EADS Astrium in Toulouse, France for the Luxembourg-based operator SES S.A., the ASTRA 1N satellite carries 52 active Ku-band transponders for TV broadcast coverage.  Initially, it is to provide interim capacity from an orbital position of 28.2 deg. East, and subsequently will move to SES’ prime location at 19.2 deg. East for primary and backup services during a designed operational lifetime of 15 years.

Lockheed Martin Commercial Space Systems produced BSAT-3c/JCSAT-110R at its plant in Newtown, Pennsylvania as part of a turnkey contract for Japanese operators B-SAT Corporation and SKY Perfect JSAT Corporation. This satellite is designed primarily to provide direct TV broadcast links for all of Japan, and will operate at an orbital slot of 110 deg. East with a 16-plus-year design lifetime.

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