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Ariane launches two satellites
Posted: Sat, May 21, 2011, 9:41 AM ET (1341 GMT)
Ariane 5 ECA launch of ST-2 and GSAT-8 (ESA) An Ariane 5 rocket launched communications satellites for India and a Signapore-Taiwan venture on Friday. The Ariane 5 ECA lifted off from Kourou, French Guiana, at 4:38 pm EDT (2038 GMT) Friday and placed the GSAT-8 and ST-2 satellites into geostationary transfer orbits about a half-hour later. GSAT-8 is a communications satellite built and operated by the Indian space agency ISRO. The 3,100-kilogram satellite carries 24 Ku-band transponders to provide primarily direct-to-home television services for India from 55 degrees east in GEO. ST-2 is a Mitsubishi Electric Company DS2000-series satellite, weighing 5,090 kilograms at launch. The satellite, owned by a joint venture of Singapore's SingTel and Taiwan's Chunghwa, carries a mix of C- and Ku-band transponders to provide communications services to Asia and the Middle East from its perch at 88 degrees east in GEO. The launch was the third Ariane 5 mission of 2011 and the 44th consecutive successful Ariane 5 launch.
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