Arianespace has declared the mission a success with the launch of Hispasat 1E and Koreasat 6. Lifting off from the Spaceport in French Guiana, Ariane 5 deployed its two passengers during a mission lasting 34 minutes. Today’s launch occurred at sunset in French Guiana, providing an excellent view of the vehicle’s ascent – including the separation of its two solid boosters at an altitude of some 67 km, and the payload fairing’s jettisoning at 106 km.
The flight had been postponed for 24 hours due to the unfavourable weather conditions over the launch pad in Kourou, French Guiana. The sixth Ariane 5 launch in 2010 was originally scheduled for liftoff on December 28.
Ariane 5’s payload lift performance for this mission is a total of about 9,260 kg., which includes a mass of 8,170 kg. for its satellite passengers, along with the associated integration hardware and the launcher’s Sylda multi-payload dispenser system.
Riding as the upper passenger in Ariane 5’s payload “stack” is Hispasat 1E, which will be released at 27 minutes into the flight. This Space Systems/Loral-built satellite weighs approximately 5,320 kg., and is to
provide capacity for Spanish operator Hispasat’s new initiatives – which include direct to home television; digital terrestrial television; value-added broadband services in mobile, land and maritime environments; and high-definition television.
Koreasat 6, which has an estimated liftoff mass of 2,850 kg., will be deployed from Ariane 5’s lower passenger position at approximately 34 minutes into the mission. Built by an industry team composed of Orbital
Sciences Corp. and Thales Alenia Space for the Republic of Korea’s KT Corporation, Koreasat 6 is to provide broadcasting and communications services across all of South Korea.