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Vega November 13, 2018

Flight VV13: Vega to launch an Earth observation satellite for the Kingdom of Morocco

For its ninth launch of the year, and the 13th Vega mission since this launcher began its career at the Guiana Space Center in 2012, Arianespace will orbit the MOHAMMED VI - B satellite. This Earth observation satellite for the Kingdom of Morocco was developed by a consortium comprising Thales Alenia Space as system prime contractor and Airbus as co-prime.

Flight VV13 marks the ninth Earth observation mission for Vega, a versatile light launcher.

Flight VV13 will be performed from the Vega Launch Complex (SLV) in Kourou, French Guiana (South America).

The Launch Readiness Review (LRR) will take place on Monday, November 19, 2018 in Kourou to authorize the start of operations for the final countdown.

The MOHAMMED VI – B satellite is an Earth observation satellite built for the Kingdom of Morocco by Thales Alenia Space as system prime contractor and Airbus as co-prime.

It will be the second satellite of the MOHAMMED VI – A & B program, with the MOHAMMED VI – A satellite launched by Arianespace on November 7, 2017, also utilizing a Vega vehicle.

The MOHAMMED VI – B satellite will be mostly used for mapping and land surveying activities, regional development, agricultural monitoring, the prevention and management of natural disasters, monitoring changes in the environment and desertification, as well as border and coastal surveillance. Being complementary, the MOHAMMED VI – A & B satellites will jointly enable a faster coverage of zones of interests.

Thales Alenia Space, as system prime contractor, supplied the payload, including the optical instrument, the image transmission subsystem, and the ground segment for image processing and production. Airbus, as satellite prime contractor, was in charge of its integration, as well as supplying the platform and the ground segment for mission planning and satellite control.

For further information, download the Flight VV13 Launch Kit by clicking here:

To watch a live, high-speed online transmission of the launch (including commentary in French and English from the launch site), go to or to on November 20, 2018, beginning 20 minutes before liftoff.

About Arianespace 

Arianespace uses space to make life better on Earth by providing launch services for all types of satellites into all orbits. It has orbited more than 580 satellites since 1980, using its family of three launchers, Ariane, Soyuz and Vega, from launch sites in French Guiana (South America) and Baikonur, Kazakhstan.

Arianespace is headquartered in Evry, near Paris, and has a technical facility at the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, plus local offices in Washington, D.C., Tokyo and Singapore.

Arianespace is a subsidiary of ArianeGroup, which holds 74% of its share capital, with the balance held by 15 other shareholders from the European launcher industry.

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