Satellites

Arianespace's 10th mission of 2002 to take off today

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Arianespace's 10th mission of the year is scheduled for lift off today at the commercial satellite operator's site in Kourou, French Guiana.

The go-ahead was given after the traditional launch readiness review, which evaluated the status of the Ariane 4 vehicle, its Intelsat 906 payload, the Spaceport launch infrastructure and the down-range tracking stations.

Liftoff of Flight 154 is set at the start of a one-hour launch window, which opens today at 3:44 am (local time at the Spaceport in French Guiana). The Intelsat 906 payload will be the 22nd payload launched by Arianespace and is the sixth spacecraft in the telecommunications operator's generation IX satellite carried aboard Ariane. Intelsat 906.

Built by Space Systems/Loral in California, Intelsat 906 will be positioned at 64.15 degrees East. It is to join Intelsat's fleet of relay spacecraft that provide internet, broadcast, telephony and corporate network solutions services for the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Flight 154 will come just one week after the successful Ariane 5 mission on 28 August that orbited a dual payload of Atlantic Bird TM 1 and MSG-1.

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