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By | October 29, 2007

      Ariane 5 Preparations Build Toward Launch Next Week

      The two satellites for the next Ariane 5 flight are in final preparation at the European Spaceport in French Guiana in South America, Arianespace announced.

      Those satellites will be lofted by the fifth Ariane 5 mission this year, which is scheduled for liftoff Nov. 9.

      This transfer marked completion of the Ariane 5 basic build-up, which was performed in the Spaceport integration building, led by industrial prime contractor Astrium Space Transportation.

      With its transfer to the final assembly building, the vehicle was delivered to Arianespace for payload integration, final checkout and launch.

      The upcoming heavy-lift mission is scheduled for Friday, Nov. 9, and is to carry the United Kingdom’s Skynet 5B military communications satellite, along with the Brazilian Star One C1 telecommunications platform.

      Skynet 5B is to be launched for spacecraft manufacturer EADS Astrium, a unit of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Co. [EADS].

      EADS will provide an in-orbit delivery to Paradigm Secure Communications, a private company. Paradigm provides survivable, resilient and secure communications services to military and government users with the Skynet series of relay satellites.

      Thales Alenia Space produced the Star One C1 satellite payload, which it booked with Arianespace for the Ariane 5 launch. Star One C1 will be operated by Star One, the Brazilian firm that is the largest regional satellite service operator in Latin America.

      The satellite is equipped with 45 C, Ku and X-band transponders, and will provide communications, multimedia and broadband Internet services for the Latin American market.

      The launch follows successful Ariane 5 flights in March, May, August and this month, which delivered eight telecommunications satellites weighing more than 29,000 kg. into geostationary transfer orbit.

      Arianespace plans a total of six Ariane 5 missions this year as it accelerates the launch rate to meet customer demand, building to a stabilized pace of eight Ariane 5 flights annually by 2009.

      Soyuz Lofts Government Satellite After Launch From Plesetsk In Russia

      A Soyuz lifter blasted off from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Russia to insert a government spacecraft into orbit, according to Starsem, Arianespace and their Russian partners.

      It was the tenth Soyuz family mission this year, with more launches on the way.?Starsem is planning to carry out several missions in coming months, including launching the Radarsat-2 observation satellite and the Giove-B satellite.

      With the introduction of the Soyuz at the Guiana Space Center (CSG), the Russian medium-class launch vehicle becomes an integral part of the European launcher fleet, together with the heavy-lift Ariane 5 and the lightweight Vega.

      To be offered to the commercial market, the Soyuz at CSG is the reference European medium-class launch vehicle for governmental and commercial missions.

      Starsem is the Soyuz Company, bringing together players involved in production, operation and international commercial marketing of the launch vehicle. Shareholders in Starsem are Arianespace, Astrium, the Russian Federal Space Agency and the Samara Space Center.

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