Arianespace Orders 35 Launchers From Astrium
Arianespace has ordered 35 Ariane 5 launchers in a follow-on agreement with Astrium, Arianespace announced June 23.
The production order extends beyond a 2004 purchase order for 30 Ariane 5 launchers, and allows the procurement of long lead-time items to begin immediately in order to facilitate launcher continuity in 2010.
Arianespace reports a backlog of 44 satellites, or more than three years’ workload. Arianespace has also ordered four Soyuz launchers.
Separately, the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES), or French National Space Agency, signed two assistance contracts for the management of Ariane launch vehicles. Astrium Space Transportation was named the prime contractor for both development and production of Ariane launch vehicles, and ESA will directly manage all new ESA-funded Ariane programs while working with CNES.
The contracts run until the end of 2010.