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Ariane rocket launches two telecoms satellites

by Staff Writers
Paris (AFP) April 23, 2011
An Ariane-5 rocket placed two telecommunications satellites into geostationary orbit early Saturday, the 43rd successive success for the European rocket, Arianespace announced.

The rocket blasted off from the European space centre at Kourou, French Guiana, at 2137 GMT Friday.

The 5.9-tonne United Arab Emirates satellite Yahsat Y1A built by Astrium and Thales Alenia Space will supply high definition television to the Middle East, Africa, Europe and South West Asia.

The Intelsat New Dawn satellite, weighing three tonnes at takeoff, will offer a range of services including telephone and Internet to Africa. It was built by Orbital Sciences Corporation.

Arianespace president Jean-Yves Le Gall acknowledged that the launch was three weeks late, after an "aborted" attempt on March 30.

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Ariane 5 Cleared For Launch With Yahsat Y1A And Intelsat New Dawn
Kourou, French Guiana (SPX) Apr 21, 2011
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