Initial “top-off” is performed with the fourth Ariane 5 for launch this year
The second of two Ariane 5 mission campaigns currently underway at the Spaceport has reached a new milestone with the completion of its vehicle’s basic build-up in French Guiana.
During activity in the Spaceport’s Launcher Integration Building, this Ariane 5 was initially topped-off with the incorporation of its ESC-A cryogenic upper stage and the vehicle equipment bay – which were installed as a single unit.
The Ariane 5 is now ready for its transfer to the adjacent Final Assembly Building, where Arianespace will take delivery of the launcher for installation of two TV broadcast and telecommunications relay satellites: BSAT-3c/JCSAT-110R and ASTRA 1N. It will be used on the fourth Ariane 5 launch of 2011.
Arianespace currently has another Ariane 5 in the Final Assembly Building, which will roll out May 19 for a liftoff the following day with its own dual-passenger payload, consisting of the ST-2 and GSAT-8 satellites.