Ariane 5 flight cleared for liftoff
November 8, 2012 07.41 Europe/London By Robert Briel

The sixth Ariane 5 flight in 2012 has been given the “go” for liftoff on Friday following a successful launch readiness review at the Spaceport in French Guiana.

The Ariane 5 therefore is cleared for its rollout today, Thursday, November 8, from the final assembly building to the ELA-3 launch zone, where it will be readied for liftoff on November 9 during a launch window that opens at 6:05 p.m. localtime in French Guiana.

Satellite passengers for this flight – designated VA210 in Arianespace’s launcher family numbering system – are Eutelsat 21B and Star One C3. Payload lift performance for the Ariane 5 is estimated at 9,215 kg. – which includes 8,250 kg. for the two satellites, along with the launcher’s dual-passenger dispenser system and integration hardware.

Produced for Eutelsat Communications by Thales Alenia Space, the Eutelsat 21B satellite will provide Ku-band telecommunications, data and broadband services over Europe, North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia.

Orbital Sciences Corporation built the Star One C3 relay platform for Brazil’s Star One telecommunications operator, and it is to offer C- and Ku-band capacity for the Brazil and Andean region of South America.