KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 30 — Arianespace, the launcher of Malaysia's Measat 1 and 2, closed the year by successfully orbiting two communications satellites, Hispasat 1E for the Spanish operator Hispasat and Koreasat 6 for the KT Corporation.
In a statement Thursday, Arianespace said the latest successful Ariane 5 launch took place early this morning (Malaysian time) from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana.
It was the sixth this year, once again proving the launcher's operational capabilities.
Ariane 5 is the only commercial satellite launcher now on the market capable of simultaneously launching two payloads and handling a complete range of missions from commercial launches into geostationary orbit to scientific satellites boosted into special orbits.
The 55th launch of a Ariane 5 and 41st successful mission in a row, clearly demonstrates the launcher's reliability and availability.
Arianespace's launch services and solutions continue to set the global standard and guarantee independent access to space for all customers, including national and international space boosted into special orbits.
With the launch, Arianespace has now orbited 12 commercial geostationary communications satellites out of 19 launched since the beginning of the year, giving it more than 60 per cent of the market.
Since being founded, Arianespace has provided launch services to 78 different customers.
Ariane launchers have orbited 289 satellites representing more than half of all commercial satellites now in service worldwide.
Hispasat 1E is the sixth Spanish satellite launched by Arianespace.
In 1992 and 1993, the European launcher orbited Hispanat 1A and 1B while in 2005 and 2006, Hispanat and its subsidiary, Hisdesat, called on Arianespace to launch the XTAR-Eur and Spainsat satellites.
Most recently, Arianespace launched the Amazonas-2 satellite for Hispasat in October 2009.
Koreasat 6 is the second satellite launched by Arianespace for the South Korean operator KT Corporation, after Koreasat 2 in 1999.
In June 2010, Arianespace launched the COMS multimission satellite for the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI). (PNA/Bernama)