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Isar Aerospace approved for Guiana Space Centre

July 22, 2022

By Chris Forrester

French Space Agency CNES (Centre National D’Etudes Spatiales) has approved Munich-based Isar Aerospace to launch its rockets from the Guiana Space Centre in French Guiana.

Isar is already planning a late-2022 launch from Andøya in Norway of its Spectrum rocket, but has been in discussions CNES to utilise the Guyana spaceport. Isar says that the French Guiana site is the only active orbital launchpad in Europe from which every orbit can be achieved. With its proximity to the equator, Guiana allows Isar Aerospace to launch its Spectrum rockets into any orbit from the same pad. Its latitude of 5°3’ also boosts performance for equatorial and medium-inclined orbits compared to high-latitude launch sites.

The CNES decision means that Isar is the first privately funded company to launch satellite from Guiana. It also means that Isar can increase its build and launch frequencies.

Isar said July 21 that it signed a binding term sheet that lays the foundation to conduct commercial and institutional launch operations starting in 2024.

“We are excited that CNES has selected us as small satellite launch operator to fly satellites from the Guiana Space Centre. With adding Kourou, we will further extend our global network of critical infrastructure and gain even more flexibility for our customers. But this is not only an important pillar for Isar Aerospace’s future growth. Creating more launch and deployment capabilities is an essential block to take on the global market for satellite launches,” Josef Fleischmann, COO and co-founder of Isar Aerospace.

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