Astra 2F launch moves to September 21
August 11, 2012 13.38 Europe/London By Robert Briel

The upcoming Ariane 5 flight with the Astra 2F satellite and the Indian GSAT-10 communications satellite as its co-passenger is set for September 21 from the Spaceport’s ELA-3 launch complex. This will be Arianespace’s fifth mission from French Guiana in 2012 with the heavy-lift workhorse.

The launch date was moved from the original September 14 date to September 21. Last July, SES announced the Astra 2F would be launched by Ariane.

Astra 2F is manufactured by Astrium. The satellite will be located at the 28.2 degrees East position, the main orbital slot for DTH broadcasting to the UK.

GSAT-10 was developed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), and will meet the growing need for Ku- and C-band transponder capacity. It is to become part of the Indian National Satellite (INSAT) system of geostationary spacecraft – representing one of the largest domestic communications satellite networks in the Asia-Pacific region.

Configured with 12 Ku-band, 12 C-band and 12 extended C-band transponders, GSAT-10 utilises the I-3K satellite bus developed by ISRO, with a power capability of some six kilowatts and a liftoff mass estimated at 3,400 kg.

The launch follows Arianespace’s mission on August 2 that orbited the Intelsat 20 and Hylas 2 satellites, the milestone 50th consecutive success for the Ariane 5 heavy-lift launcher.