Status Report

Flight 162 August 4: The Ariane 5’s payload lineup is complete

By SpaceRef Editor
August 5, 2003
Filed under , ,

The third payload for Arianespace’s upcoming Flight 162 has arrived at the
Spaceport in French Guiana, and is now undergoing pre-launch checkout.

Eutelsat’s e-BIRD high-speed Internet platform joins Flight 162’s two other
payloads – INSAT-3E for India and the European Space Agency’s SMART-1, both
of which arrived earlier at the Spaceport and are being processed in the S5
satellite preparation facility.

Launch campaign activity continues on schedule for an August 28 liftoff of
Flight 162 with an Ariane 5 Generic launcher.

e-BIRD was unloaded from a Boeing 747 after its August 1 arrival at Cayenne
Rochambeau International Airport. The spacecraft is housed in a protective
shipping container, and is being loaded on a flatbed truck for its transfer
to the Spaceport near Kourou. Boeing Satellite Systems built e-BIRD, which
is the first spacecraft manufactured by the company for Eutelsat.

Alliant Techsystems’ STAR 30C apogee kick motor for e-BIRD also was
airlifted to French Guiana aboard the 747. This solid propellant kick motor
will be used to boost e-BIRD to its geostationary orbital altitude following
the satellite’s deployment from Ariane 5. Integration of the STAR 30C with
e-BIRD will occur in the S5 clean room.

Technicians made the first checkout of e-BIRD after the satellite’s arrival
in the S5 facility. The cylinder-shaped e-BIRD is a spin-stabilized Boeing
376HP spacecraft with a liftoff mass of 1,525 kg. (3,362 lb.). e-BIRD is
shown in its stowed configuration for liftoff. Once in orbit, the
satellite’s overall length will be approximately doubled when a second
telescoping cylindrical solar panel is deployed. Atop e-BIRD’s is the
primary antenna reflector, which is in its folded position.

SpaceRef staff editor.