Ariane 5 Galileo Navigation Satellites (23-26) Launch This Week

Images credit & copyright: ESA/CNES/Arianespace.

Launch Alert! Wednesday, July 25, 2018 at 11:25 UTC (07:25 EDT & 04:25 PDT) Arianespace will launch their massive heavy lift, Ariane 5 ES rocket, designated VA244 carrying 4 Galileo navigation satellites from Launch Site, Ensemble de Lancement Ariane-3 (ELA-3) at the Arianespace Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.

Galileo satellites are named after children that have won the European Commission’s Galileo drawing competition. The four in this launch will be FM19 Tara, FM20 Samuel, FM21 Anna and FM22 Ellen.

This will be Arianespace’s 4th launch of 2018, the 99th launch of the Ariane 5 and its 3rd launch of 2018.

NOTE: We have the opportunity to have two major launchers launch within 14 minutes of one another as SpaceX is slated to launch a Falcon 9 at 07:39 EDT. Don’t know if I’ve seen that before.

Arianespace, Ariane 5 Rocket: 2-stage expendable launch vehicle that stands 50.5 m (165.8 ft.) tall, 5.4 m (17.7 ft.) in diameter and is equipped with two solid rocket boosters.  It comes in two variants (ECA & ES) and carries payloads weighing more than 10 metric tons to Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) and over 20 metric tons into Low Earth Orbit (LEO).

Ariane 5 ECA: The Geostationary Transfer Orbit (GTO) workhorse usually carries a payload of two satellites. The primary difference from the Ariane 5 ECA configuration is the use of a storable propellant upper stage, which can perform multiple burns to deploy payloads into the desired orbit.

Ariane 5 ES is tailored for low-Earth orbit missions with the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), a resupply spacecraft for the International Space Station (ISS) that weighs more than 19,000 kg at liftoff. The ES Ariane 5 version also is capable of lofting satellites for Europe’s new Galileo space-based navigation system. The primary difference from the Ariane 5 ECA configuration is the use of a storable propellant upper stage, which can perform multiple burns to deploy payloads into the desired orbit.

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Payload Fairing (PLF): The main payload fairing is a 2-shell protective enclosure 5.4 m. (17.7 ft.) in diameter and 20 m. (65.6 ft.) in length. Roughly 3 minutes and around 100 km after liftoff the PLF halves are pyrotechnically jettisoned.

Inside the fairing of the ECA configuration is the structure that accommodates two satellites called “Systeme de Lancement Double Ariane 5” or SYLDA 5.

Etage Superieur Cryotechnique (ESC-A) Cryogenic Upper Stage (ECA configuration):

Upper stage also contains the Vehicle Equipment Bay (VEB-C) or “The Brain” which controls the entire vehicle autonomously and also transmits flight data back to the ground.

Height: 4.7 m. (15.4 ft.)

Diameter: 5.4m (17.7 ft.)

Engine(s): Single HM-7B

Engine Type (cycle): Gas generator (open cycle)

Chamber Pressure: 3.7 MPa (37 bar)

Propellant Feed: Turbopump

Fuel Type: Liquid

Fuel: Liquid hydrogen (LH2)

Oxidizer: Liquid Oxygen (LOX)

Thrust (vacuum): 67 kN (15,000 lbf.)

Specific Impulse (vacuum): 446 s

Burn Time: 945 s

Reusable?: No

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Etage Propergols Stockables (EPS) Second Stage (ES configuration):

Upper stage also contains the Vehicle Equipment Bay (VEB-C) or “The Brain” which controls the entire vehicle autonomously and also transmits flight data back to the ground.

Height: 3.4 m. (11 ft.)

Diameter: 5.4m (17.7 ft.)

Engine(s): Single Aestus

Engine Type (cycle): Pressure fed

Chamber Pressure: 11 bar

Propellant Feed: Pressure fed

Fuel Type: Liquid

Fuel: Monomethylhydrazine (MMH)

Oxidizer: Nitrogen tetroxide (N2O4)

Thrust (vacuum): 27 kN (6,100 lbf.)

Specific Impulse (sea level/vacuum): N/A

Burn Time: 1170 s

Reusable?: No

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Etage dAcceleration a Poudre (EAP) Solid Rocket Boosters (SRB’s):

How Many?: 2

Height: 31.6 m. (104 ft.)

Diameter: 3.06 m (10 ft.)

Engine(s): Each has a single P241

Engine Type (cycle):

Chamber Pressure: N/A

Propellant Feed:

Fuel Type: Solid

Fuel: Ammonium perchlorate (AP)(68%)/aluminum (AL)(18%)/hydroxyl-terminated polybutadine (HTPB)(14%)

Thrust Each (sea level): 7,080 kN (1,590,000 lbf).

Specific Impulse (sea level/vacuum): N/A

Burn Time: 140 s

Reusable?: No

Etage Principal Cryotechnique (EPC) Core Cryogenic Stage (1st Stage):

Height: 30 m. (98.4 ft.)

Diameter: 5.4m (17.7 ft.)

Engine(s): Single Vulcan-2

Engine Type (cycle): Gas generator (open)

Chamber Pressure: 100 bar (1,500 psi)

Propellant Feed: Turbopump

Fuel Type: Liquid

Fuel: Liquid hydrogen (LH2)

Oxidizer: Liquid Oxygen (LOX)

Thrust (sea level/vacuum): 960 kN (220,000 lbf)/1,390 kN (310,000 lbf.)

Specific Impulse (sea level/vacuum): 310 s/432 s

Burn Time: 540 s

Reusable?: No

Stream Live:

Main site: http://www.arianespace.tv/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/arianespace

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArianeGroup

VA-244 Mission Data: 

VA-244 mission information: http://www.arianespace.com/mission-update/va244-galileo-fit-check/

VA-244 Press Release:

VA-244 Launch Kit:

Galileo Satellite Details: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Galileo_satellites

General 2018 Launch Schedule (Wiki): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2018_in_spaceflight

Arianespace:

Arianespace Homepage: http://www.arianespace.com

Stephane Israel (CEO Arianespace): https://twitter.com/arianespaceceo

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Arianespace

Instagram: http://instagram.com/arianespace

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/arianespace/

You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/arianespace

Livestream: http://www.livestream.com/arianespace

ArianeGroup:

Website: https://www.ariane.group/en/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ArianeGroup

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ArianeGroup

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ArianeGroup/

European Space Agency (ESA):

European Space Agency (ESA) homepage: http://www.esa.int/ESA

Twitter: https://twitter.com/esa

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EuropeanSpaceAgency

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/europeanspaceagency/

Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/+EuropeanSpaceAgency

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/europeanspaceagency/sets/

You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/user/ESA

ESA Images: http://www.esa.int/spaceinimages/Images

ESA page for more VA233 launch images: http://www.esa.int/spaceinimages/Missions/Galileo

Centre national d’études spatiales (CNES):

Main Site: https://cnes.fr/en

Facebook: https://fr-fr.facebook.com/CNESFrance

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CNES

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/CNES

Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/+CnesFrance

CNES Media Library (images, videos etc.): https://cnes.fr/en/mediatheque

Spaceport Kourou & Ariane 5 Data:  

Ariane 5 vehicle information: http://www.arianespace.com/vehicle/ariane-5/

Ariane 5 User’s Manual: http://www.arianespace.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Ariane5_users_manual_Issue5_July2011.pdf

Ariane 5 Brochure: http://www.arianespace.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Ariane5-Flyer-Sep2015.pdf

ESA Ariane 5 vehicle data page: http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Launchers/Launch_vehicles/Ariane_5

Ariane 5 Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ariane_5

Spaceport French Guiana: http://www.arianespace.com/spaceport-facility/

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