Friday, June 9, 2023

Date set for final Ariane 5 rocket launch

Arianespace is planning to launch an Ariane 5 rocket next week that will place two satellites in space, one for Germany and one for France.

Designated Flight VA261, this will be the 117th and last mission using an Ariane 5. The launcher will be replaced by the new European heavy launcher Ariane 6.

The German satellite, Heinrich-Hertz-Satellit, is for the German Space Agency. The second payload, SYRACUSE 4B, is for the French Armament General Directorate.

The launch is planned for 5:28 p.m. EDT on Friday (June 16).

Both satellites will be placed into a Geostationary Transfer Orbit approximately 30 minutes after liftoff.

For this launch, Arianespace will serve, for the first time, the German Space Agency on behalf of the German Government by orbiting the Heinrich-Hertz-Satellit, as well as the French Ministry of Defence, owner of the SYRACUSE 4B satellite.

The Heinrich-Hertz-Mission is the first dedicated German telecommunications satellite-based mission that will be used to conduct research and test new technologies. The mission is managed by the German Space Agency on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action and with the participation of the German Federal Ministry of Defence. The Heinrich-Hertz-Satellit was mainly developed and built by OHB System.

SYRACUSE 4B will provide better telecommunications services for the French military. The satellite will work in conjunction with SYRACUSE 4A, already in orbit, to connect armed forces when deployed. The satellites will also support North Atlantic Treaty Organization operations.

The SYRACUSE 4B and SYRACUSE 4A satellites were developed by Airbus Defence and Space and Thales Alenia Space.

The June 16 launch will be the 347th launch for the European-based launch service provider Arianespace. Heinrich-Hertz-Satellit and SYRACUSE 4B will be the 1,152nd and 1,153rd satellites to be launched by Arianespace.

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