250th launch of Arianespace rocket

Posted on 15 Dec 2019 and read 718 times
250th launch of Arianespace rocketArianespace delivered another dual-satellite payload to orbit with the 250th launch of an Ariane-series vehicle (Flight VA250) — 40 years after the historic maiden flight of an Ariane 1 rocket in 1979.

Lifting off on 26 November from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, the Ariane 5 placed the TIBA-1 and Inmarsat GX5 satellites into a geostationary transfer orbit on a mission lasting 34min from lift-off to final payload separation.

The Ariane 5 launcher, which is delivered to Arianespace by ArianeGroup as ‘production prime contractor’, provided an estimated total lift of 10,479kg, including the satellites and hardware for their dual-payload deployment system (www.arianespace.com).

Deployed first in the flight sequence (27min after lift-off), TIBA-1 is a communications satellite for the government of Egypt; it was developed by Thales Alenia Space and Airbus Defence and Space as co-prime contractors, with Thales Alenia Space acting as lead partner.

Inmarsat GX5 was carried in Ariane 5’s lower payload position and released second.

Produced by Thales Alenia Space, it is a ‘very-high-throughput’ communications satellite that will be fully integrated into Inmarsat’s current Global Xpress high-speed network (its coverage area will include the Middle East, Europe and the Indian sub-continent).

Flight VA250 was Arianespace’s fourth mission in 2019 using a heavy-lift Ariane 5, and the eighth across its full launcher family, which also includes the medium Soyuz and lightweight Vega.

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