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Launch Successful: Ariane 5 Orbits Amazonas 3 and Azerspace/Africasat-1a

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I’d like to direct you to the highlights for yesterday’s exciting Ariane 5 flight, which are now online—they’re well worth checking out.

The first Ariane 5 launch of 2013, VA 212 successfully delivered Amazonas-3 and Azerspace/Africasat-1a to geostationary transfer orbit. Arianespace knows how to begin the year in style, breaking its previous record for mass to orbit, the mission weighing in at 10,317 kg. This launch also helped Azerbaijan make history—Azerspace/Africasat-1a is that nation’s first satellite.

VA212 posted other impressive numbers: it was the 54th flawless Ariane 5 mission in a row, the 68th Ariane 5 launch overall, and the 32nd first satellite launched for a new operator. Arianespace concluded this campaign directly on the heels of its commercial Soyuz flight from Baikonur yesterday, where six Globalstar-2 satellite were safely placed into MEO. If that isn’t versatility, I don’t know what is.

In case you missed either launch, you catch both at www.arianespace.tv or on the Arianespace iPhone/iPad App.

And don’t forget Arianespace’s upcoming Albert Einstein Automated Transfer Vehicle resupply mission to the International Space Station in April.

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