Arianespace has successfully launched two geostationary satellites: Star One C4 for the private operator Embratel Star One, a satellite communications company in South America, and MSG-4 for EUMETSAT, the European organisation dedicated to weather, climate and environmental monitoring.
The third Ariane 5 launch of the year took place on July 15 at 6:42 pm local time in Kourou, French Guiana, from the Guiana Space Center (CSG).
Star One C4, built by Space Systems/Loral (SSL), is the company’s tenth satellite. It will increase Embratel Star One’s telecom, broadcast and Internet service capacity in Brazil, other South American countries, Mexico and the United States. Arianespace and Embratel Star One have teamed up successfully for the last 30 years, with Arianespace launching all of the company’s satellites.
With Star One C4, Arianespace and SSL celebrate their 50th joint mission to geostationary transfer orbit (GTO). Arianespace’s current launch manifest includes 14 more SSL-built satellites to be launched.
Built by Thales Alenia Space, the MSG-4 satellite will carry on the mission assigned to EUMETSAT’s Second Generation satellites. EUMETSAT is the European Meteorological Satellite organization, dedicated to monitoring weather, climate and environmental conditions. Its meteorological observation services, primarily intended for Europe, will also extend to encompass Africa (including Reunion Island), the Atlantic Ocean and the eastern part of South America.
The partnership between Arianespace and EUMETSAT, serving all European citizens, reaches back to 1981; MSG-4 is the tenth Meteosat satellite to be launched by Arianespace.
Shortly after the announcement that the two satellites had been injected into orbit, Arianespace Chairman and CEO Stéphane Israël said: “Arianespace is very proud of having successfully completed this evening’s dual launch, orbiting the Star One C4 satellite for the private operator Embratel Star One, to bolster its position in the Americas; and the MSG-4 satellite for the European organization EUMETSAT, which will be able to commission the fourth and last of its second-generation satellites. I would like to thank our customers for their continuing loyalty, which has been unflagging for more than 30 years. Along with them, we are very honoured to launch these satellites that will improve life on Earth and support sustainable development, just a few months before the COP 21 climate change conference.
“I would also like to thank all our partners who contributed to this sixth launch of the year, the 66th successful launch in a row and the 80th overall for Ariane 5: ESA, prime contractor for the Ariane program; all European companies who contribute to Ariane under the direction of industrial prime Airbus Safran Launchers; the satellite manufacturers SSL and Thales Alenia Space; CNES-CSG and companies at the launch base; and of course the men and women of Arianespace, whose commitment and professionalism are clearly reflected in the success of this sixth launch of the year.”