[Satnews] The launch campaign for Arianespace's upcoming Ariane 5 mission from French Guiana has entered its latest phase of preparations, with the flight's EUTELSAT 65 West A satellite passenger now integrated on the initial launcher hardware.
This milestone occurred with the relay satellite's installation atop a cone-shaped adapter that will serve as its interface when mated to the launch vehicle. The activity took place in the Spaceport's S5 payload preparation facility, and is to be followed by EUTELSAT 65 West A's transfer to the Ariane 5 Final Assembly Building for integration with the launcher.
Liftoff of Ariane 5 with the 6,615-kg. EUTELSAT 65 West A telecommunications platform is set for March 9 on Arianespace Flight VA229 - the 229th mission with an Ariane family launch vehicle.
To be deployed into geostationary transfer orbit by Ariane 5, the SSL-built (Space Systems Loral) satellite will subsequently operate from an orbital slot of 65 deg. West to serve expanding markets in Brazil and across Latin America. EUTELSAT 65 West A combines broad coverage in C- and Ku-bands for video distribution, cellular backhaul and direct-to-home broadcasting with a high-throughput payload for broadband access in the Ka-band.
Flight VA229 will carry the 31st satellite launched by Arianespace for the Paris, France-based Eutelsat, which supplies satellite capacity and services for video, data and broadband applications.