Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Space Travel News .

Payload preps continue for first Ariane 5 flights of 2013
by Staff Writers
Kourou, French Guiana (ESA) Feb 01, 2013

File image.

Preparations with passengers for Ariane 5's upcoming two flights are advancing in parallel at the Spaceport, underscoring the flexibility of this workhorse vehicle and highlighting the sustained pace of Arianespace's launch activity in 2013.

The Azerspace/Africasat-1a and Amazonas 3 telecommunications satellites for Ariane 5's next liftoff - scheduled February 7 on a mission to geostationary transfer orbit - are undergoing processing at the French Guiana launch site; while separate activity is in progress with the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), which is to be placed in low Earth orbit on the following flight - planned in the spring - for servicing of the International Space Station.

These are the first two of Arianespace's six heavy-lift missions planned with Ariane 5 in 2013, designated Flights VA212 and VA213 to signify the 212th and 213th liftoffs of Ariane family vehicles from French Guiana since the European launcher's service entry in 1979.

Readying Flight VA212's two satellite passengers
In recent preparation activity for Flight VA212, Azerspace/Africasat-1a was fueled in the Spaceport's S5 processing center, while Amazonas 3 underwent a fit-check inside the launch site's separate S1B clean room building to validate its compatibility with the interface adapter for Ariane 5's payload "stack."

The fueled Azerspace/Africasat-1a satellite weighs approximately 3,250 kg. and is based on Orbital Sciences Corporation's STAR-2 platform. It was produced by the company under contract to the Republic of Azerbaijan's Ministry of Communications and Information Technologies for the country's national satellite operator, Azercosmos.

Integrated and tested at Orbital's satellite manufacturing facility in Dulles, Virginia, Azerspace/Africasat-1a is outfitted with 36 active C- and Ku-band transponders to provide communications coverage for Azerbaijan, Central Asia, Europe and Africa from an orbital location of 46 deg. East longitude.

Amazonas 3 was built by Space Systems/Loral in Palo Alto, California for the HISPASAT Group, and will operate from a 61+ West longitude orbital slot.

Using the SSL 1300 platform, this 6,200-kg. satellite has 33 Ku-band and 19 C-band transponders, along with 9 Ka-band spot beams, enabling telecommunications services that include direct-to-home television (DTH), corporate fixed and mobile telephone networks, and broadband capacity with coverage across the Americas, Europe, and North Africa.

The Automated Transfer Vehicle for Flight VA213 takes shape
The launch campaign for Arianespace's Flight VA213 has marked a major milestone, as the two major elements of its Automated Transfer Vehicle resupply spacecraft are now integrated in the Spaceport's S5 processing center.

The 10.7-meter-tall ATV is composed of an Integrated Cargo Carrier section and the Service Module, enabling it to deliver experiment equipment, spare parts, food, air and water for the International Space Station's crew.

Flight VA213 will be Arianespace's fourth launch of an ATV, supporting a multi-year program managed by the European Space Agency. Prime contractor for the ATV is Astrium, which heads a European industry team.


Related Links
Launch Pad at

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

First Ariane 5 For 2013 Ready For Loading
Kourou, French Guiana (ESA) Jan 28, 2013
Arianespace's first Ariane 5 for launch in 2013 is now ready to receive its two satellite passengers after this heavy-lift launcher was moved to the Spaceport's Final Assembly Building in French Guiana. The Ariane 5 rolled out yesterday from the Launcher Integration Building - where its core cryogenic stage, two solid boosters and cryogenic upper stage were assembled by prime contractor As ... read more

Site of space rocket launch to become home of S. Korea's space program

Payload preps continue for first Ariane 5 flights of 2013

NASA Wallops Rocket Mission January 29 Prepping for Future Projects

Russia's Troubled Rocket Cleared for Launch

AAS Division For Planetary Sciences Issues Statement On Mars 2020 Program

Curiosity Maneuver Prepares for Drilling

Ridges on Mars suggest ancient flowing water

Changes on Mars Caused by Seasonal Thawing of CO2

US, Europe team up for moon fly-by

Russia to Launch Lunar Mission in 2015

US, Europe team up for moon fly-by

Mission would drag asteroid to the moon

The PI's Perspective: The Seven-Year Itch

New Horizons Gets a New Year's Workout

Halfway Between Uranus and Neptune, New Horizons Cruises On

Dwarf planet Makemake lacks atmosphere

TW Hydrae: There's more to astronomers' favorite planetary nursery than previously thought

The Origin And Maintenance Of A Retrograde Exoplanet

New Evidence Indicates Auroras Occur Outside Our Solar System

Glitch has space telescope shut down

NASA Awards Space Launch System Advanced Development Grants

NASA Engineers Resurrect And Test Mighty F-1 Engine Gas Generator

Dextre Refuels Mock Satellite and Aces a Major Test for Space Robotics

Scientists create tractor beam

Reshuffle for Tiangong

China to launch 20 spacecrafts in 2013

Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

Record Setting Asteroid Flyby

Commercial Asteroid Hunters Announce Plans For New Robotic Exploration Fleet

US company aims to 'harvest' asteroids

Comet of the Century?

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement