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Arianespace cautious over Soyuz problem

October 12, 2018

By Chris Forrester

Rocket launch company Arianespace says its planned use of a number of Soyuz rockets could be on hold pending more information on what precisely went wrong on October 11th when two astronauts had to abandon a planned mission to the International Space Station.

Arianespace said in a statement: “Along with our Russian partners, as soon as the relevant data is available, we will study the possible impact of this anomaly on Arianespace’s planned launches with Soyuz. At this point, it is still too early to draw any conclusions. In the meantime, the launch campaign for next Soyuz in November is continuing.”

Arianespace uses a different version (Soyuz ST) of the Soyuz rocket that suffered an anomaly on October 11th (Soyuz FG).

Four major Arianespace launches are planned for this winter using Soyuz rockets (OneWeb’s debut launch of its first batch of 10 satellites, reportedly scheduled for February 2109) as well as launches for SES (4 satellites for O3b) and a couple of scientific missions for Italy and the European Space Agency.

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