Enhancing telecom: Arianespace’s Ariane 5 delivers T-16 and EUTELSAT 7C to geostationary transfer orbit
Arianespace launched two telecommunications satellites tonight on the latest Ariane 5 success, marking the company’s 310th flight overall and underscoring its ability to deliver “any payload to any orbit at any time” from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.
Conducted from the ELA-3 launch pad, today’s mission deployed an estimated payload lift performance of 10,594 kg. to geostationary transfer orbit. T-16 was released first in the sequence, separating from Ariane 5 27 minutes after liftoff, followed six minutes later by its EUTELSAT 7C co-passenger.
“For the second Ariane 5 launch of the year, our heavy-weight vehicle has once more performed perfectly,” said Arianespace CEO Stéphane Israël, who provided his post-flight comments from the Spaceport’s mission control center. “Congratulations to all!”
Another dual-payload delivery for Ariane 5
T-16 – produced in France by Airbus Defence and Space, based on the Eurostar 3000 LX Hybrid platform – will provide high-power broadcast services in Ku- and Ka-bands.
Ariane 5 ascends from the Spaceport’s ELA-3 launch zone, commencing Arianespace’s fifth flight of 2019.
Being flexible, this hybrid-propulsion-powered broadcast satellite can be operated from five different orbital slots (from 99 deg. West to 119 deg. West) – with a coverage area that includes the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Its liftoff mass was estimated at 6,350 kg.
EUTELSAT 7C, an all-electric-propulsion telecommunications satellite for operation by Eutelsat, was released from the Ariane 5 launcher’s lower payload position. It was built by Maxar Technologies in the U.S. state of California using the company’s 1300-140” All-Electric platform and weighed approximately 3,400 kg. at liftoff.
Once operational from its orbital position at 7 deg. East, EUTELSAT 7C will significantly increase capacity over Sub-Saharan Africa – making room for several hundred additional digital channels as this region’s television market continues to grow at a rapid pace.
Continuing the 2019 launch cadence
Flight VA248 was Arianespace’s fifth launch so far in 2019, and it follows one other Ariane 5 mission performed this year on February 5 – which successfully orbited the Saudi Geostationary Satellite 1/Hellas Sat 4 and GSAT-31 satellites.
Also conducted earlier in 2019 were Soyuz missions on February 27 (carrying OneWeb constellation satellites) and April 4 (O3b constellation satellites); plus Vega’s March 21 flight with the Italian PRISMA Earth observation spacecraft.
The next launch on Arianespace’s schedule is Vega Flight VV15, which will orbit a payload for the United Arab Emirates on July 5.
Clear skies allowed spectacular views of Arianespace’s Ariane 5 following its evening liftoff from the Spaceport.
Read the press release on Arianespace’s successful launch of T-16 and EUTELSAT 7C.
High-resolution launch photos, along with the Flight VA248 liftoff video, are available in the Gallery.
More details on this Arianespace mission success are available in the Flight VA248 launch kit: