Latest Mission updates

Ariane 5 June 26, 2010

Photo report: Ariane 5’s sunset launch with Arabsat-5A and COMS

Adding its own burst of light to a French Guiana sunset, the Ariane 5 with Arabsat-5A and COMS lifts off from the Spaceport. This wide-angle image captures the movement of multiple umbilicals as they pull away from the launcher, being disconnected as planned by the Ariane 5’s upward movement during ascent.

Today’s liftoff of Ariane 5 came during the French Guiana sunset, providing a picture-postcard setting for this latest on-target dual-payload launch for Arianespace.

Departing at 6:41 p.m. local time in French Guiana, the heavy-lift Ariane 5 ECA vehicle deployed its Arabsat-5A and COMS satellite passengers into geostationary transfer orbit during a mission lasting 32 minutes.

These photos, taken from various camera positions at the Spaceport, highlights Ariane 5’s initial moments of its no. 2 launch of 2010. (Click on the images for a larger version):


705-1-lgThe Ariane 5 is nearly clear of its mobile launch table’s umbilical mast during climbout from the Spaceport’s ELA-3 launch complex.  Surrounding the launch zone are four large towers that provide protection from lightning strikes. Arianespace’s June 26 mission with Ariane 5 marked the workhorse vehicle’s 51st liftoff from French Guiana.


705-2-lgFramed by palm trees, Ariane 5 gains altitude under the power of its Vulcain 2 cryogenic main engine and its two solid rocket boosters.  All three propulsion system elements are ignited prior to liftoff, beginning with the Vulcain 2 – whose operation is fully verified during seven seconds before the ignition command is given for the solid boosters.

Ariane 5 June 24, 2010

Postponement of the Ariane 5 launch with Arabsat-5A and COMS

Read more
Tune in on close