Latest Mission updates

Soyuz January 25, 2017

Hispasat 36W-1 is integrated on Soyuz for Friday’s medium-lift Arianespace mission from the Spaceport

The Soyuz for Arianespace’s first mission of 2017 from the Spaceport in French Guiana is now complete, following its “topping off” with the Hispasat 36W-1 telecommunications satellite.

Hispasat 36W-1’s installation on Soyuz is a key preparation step for Arianespace’s Flight VS16

The Hispasat 36W-1 satellite, encapsulated in Soyuz’ ST-type payload fairing along with the Fregat upper stage, arrives on the launch pad (photo, left) and is hoisted inside the mobile gantry for installation atop the launch vehicle (photo at right).

Integration of Hispasat 36W-1 occurred in the mobile gantry on the Spaceport’s ELS launch pad, with this three-metric-ton-category relay platform encapsulated in Soyuz’ ST-type payload fairing along with the Fregat upper stage.

All is now ready for the final checkout and tomorrow’s Launch Readiness Review, which will clear the way for a January 27 nighttime departure of the medium-lift mission, designated Flight VS16 in Arianespace’s launcher family numbering system.

Soyuz’ first Spaceport mission to GTO

Hispasat 36W-1 is the initial telecommunications satellite to use a SmallGEO series platform, developed under the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems (ARTES) program. It was designed and manufactured by Germany’s OHB System AG.

After reaching the 36 deg. West orbital position, Hispasat 36W-1 is to be operated by Hispasat – a world leader in Spanish and Portuguese broadcasting, providing relay coverage and multimedia services for continental Europe, the Canary Islands and South America.

Flight VS16 will be the 16th liftoff of a Soyuz since its 2011 introduction at the Spaceport, and marks launcher’s first mission to geostationary transfer orbit (GTO) from French Guiana.

The mission’s nominal duration is 32 minutes, 10 seconds, with the liftoff set at exactly:

– 22:03:34, local time in French Guiana on January 27,
– 01:03:34, Universal Time (UTC) on January 28,
– 02:03:34, in Paris on January 28.

  • Larger versions of the photos above are available for downloading in the gallery.
  • More details on Soyuz Flight VS16 are available in the launch kit:
Soyuz Flight VS16
PDF / 1 MB

European Space Agency website:

Hispasat website:

OHB website:

Soyuz January 24, 2017

Soyuz rolls out for Arianespace’s medium-lift launch with Hispasat 36W-1

Read more
Tune in on close