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Ariane 5 completes last mission for 2010, orbits 2 satellites


Ariane 5 lifting off from French Guiana spaceport on Wednesday. An Arianespace photo

PARIS (BNS): Completing its sixth and last mission for 2010, an Ariane 5 rocket successfully orbited two telecommunications satellites for Spain and South Korea on Wednesday.

The rocket lifted off from the French Guiana spaceport at 21:27 GMT with the Hispasat-1E and Koreasat-6 satellites on board.

The satellites were accurately injected into their transfer orbits about 27 minutes and 34 minutes after liftoff, respectively.

Earlier on Tuesday, Arianespace had put off the launch by a day following windy weather conditions in French Guiana.

The two satellites launched Wednesday will provide television and broadband services.

The Hispasat-1E, which will provide high-quality capacity for Spanish operator HISPASAT, will be positioned in ‘geostationary orbit’ above the equator at 30ºW. It will provide direct-to-home TV, digital terrestrial TV and high-definition TV services, as well as value-added broadband services to mobile, land and maritime users.

The Koreasat-6, to be positioned over 116ºE, carries 24 Ku-band channels to provide Fixed Satellite Services and six channels for Direct Broadcast Services in South Korea.

Wednesday’s launch was the sixth flight and the 41st consecutive successful flight for the heavy-lift workhorse Ariane 5. The rocket has orbited 12 large telecommunications satellites during dual-payload launches this year, Arianespace said.

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