Home >> News: August 24th, 2016 >> Story
Satnews Daily
August 24th, 2016

Airbus Safran Launchers Broke A Weight Lifting Record With Ariane 5's Launch

The Heavy Lifter, Ariane 5, successfully launched its payload of two telecommunications satellites in geostationary transfer orbit from the European spaceport in Kourou (French Guiana) for Intelsat today, commemorating it as Ariane 5's 73rd consecutive successful launch. Today the rocket was the heaviest yet, and beat its existing payload record of more than 10.7 tonnes, set by the previous launch.


Alain Charmeau, CEO of Airbus Safran Launchers stated at the press conference, “What might appear to be just few more kilos (5 more than the previous launch) between this payload record and the previous one is in fact a symbol of the constant commitment by our teams, on behalf of our customers, to improve the performance and competitiveness of the Ariane 5 launcher, whose extreme reliability has once again been confirmed.  On the occasion of this further success, I wish to thank Arianespace, ESA and CNES for their confidence and their support.”

This time, the launch performance achieved by the Ariane 5 ECA was 10,735kg (of which 9,853 kg was accounted for by the satellites), thus improving the payload record of 10,730 kg set on June18, also by an Ariane 5 ECA.

Airbus Safran Launchers is lead contractor for the Ariane 5 launchers, as the company coordinates an industrial network of more than 550 companies in 12 European countries, including more than 100 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). 

Airbus Safran Launchers is also industrial lead contractor for Europe’s future Ariane 6 launcher, which is scheduled for its maiden flight in 2020 and which will replace Ariane 5 in about 2023.

The Ariane 232 flight in figures:

  • 87th launch of an Ariane 5,
  • 57th launch of an Ariane 5 ECA,
  • 10th Ariane 5 launch with Airbus Safran Launchers as lead contractor,
  • 61st consecutive success by a launcher fitted with a Vulcain® 2 engine,
  • 130th consecutive success by a launcher fitted with the HM7B engine.