The THOR 7 satellite was topped off in the Spaceport's S5 payload preparation facility, readying this multi-mission telecommunications platform for its subsequent integration as the flight's upper passenger. Built by SSL (Space Systems/Loral), THOR 7 will be operated by Telenor Satellite Broadcasting—a major European satellite provider of broadcast and data communication services for customers in the broadcast, maritime, and oil and gas markets.
Joining THOR 7 on Arianespace's Ariane 5 mission in April is the Sicral 2 military telecommunications satellite that will provide strategic and tactical links for French and Italian military forces, as well as reserve telecommunications capacity for other NATO nations. Sicral 2 arrived in French Guiana last week and is now undergoing its preparations at the Spaceport. It will ride in the lower passenger position of Ariane 5's dual payload arrangement.
The mission with THOR 7 and Sicral 2 is designated Flight VA222 in the numbering system for Arianespace's launcher family, which also includes the medium-lift Soyuz and lightweight Vega.
Follow Arianespace's launch activity at: http://www.arianespace.com/.