Soyuz lifts off from French Guiana with two Galileo FOC spacecraft
Arianespace’s Soyuz launcher has begun its latest mission from the Spaceport, carrying two Full Operational Capability (FOC) satellites for Europe’s Galileo navigation system.
Soyuz is to deploy its passengers on a flight lasting approximately 3 hrs., 48 min.
Payload lift performance for today’s mission – which is designated Flight VS13 in Arianespace’s launcher family numbering system – is estimated at 1,603 kg.
Galileo’s FOC phase is being funded and managed by the European Commission, which has designated the European Space Agency as the system’s design and procurement agent. The prime contractor for these two Galileo FOC satellites is OHB System of Germany, with their navigation payloads supplied by Surrey Satellite Technology Ltd. of the UK.