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Arianespace Takes Smallsats Directly into GEO

By | August 6, 2019
Artist rendition of Ariane 64 ESA

Artist rendition of Ariane 64. Photo: ESA

Arianespace has revealed its GO-1 mission, a rideshare service for small satellites directly entering Geostationary Orbit (GEO). The mission will take place in the first half of 2022, and aims to carry more than 4,500 kilograms (kg) of payloads.

For this mission, an Ariane 64 rocket will be used, and will take off from Guiana Space Center in French Guiana.  According to the release, the GO-1 mission will inaugurate a regular, frequent path to direct GEO for small satellites.

“This is a new day for small satellites: until now, there has been no convenient, predictable, affordable path to GEO for small satellites. But with the Ariane 64 coming online and the GO-1 mission, we’ve engineered a solution that will pave the way for a smallsat revolution in geostationary orbit,” commented Arianespace CEO Stéphane Israël. “While most of such launches depend on a lead customer who could delay the flight, the GO-1 mission will follow a specific schedule – offering to each customer and to each satellite a ‘place of honor’ aboard this flight, which will lift off once the targeted payload capacity is booked.”