September 1, 2011
By Chris Forrester
Arianespace has decided to undertake a few extra tests on the giant Ariane-5 rocket’s upper stage engine.
This will take “a few days” says Arianespace, but create an inevitable delay to the launch of Arabsat 5C and SES-2, originally scheduled for September 9th.
For the upcoming flight, Arabsat-5C is the mission’s larger payload, with an estimated liftoff mass of 4,630 kg. SES-2 will weigh approximately 3,152 kg. at launch.
The multi-mission Arabsat-5C was built for the Arabsat, and is to provide capacity in both the C- and Ka-bands for a range of communications services, and will be operated from Arabsat’s 20 deg East slot. The satellite was manufactured in a joint effort by two European companies, EADS Astrium and Thales Alenia Space.
SES-2 was built by Orbital Sciences and is a hybrid C- and Ku-band spacecraft originally ordered by SES World Skies and will serve North America from an orbital slot of 87 deg. West.