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Soyuz January 19, 2017

Flight VS16 – First-ever mission to geostationary orbit with Soyuz from the Guiana Space Center to launch Hispasat satellite

For its year-opening launch of 2017, Arianespace will orbit the Hispasat 36W-1 geostationary satellite for the Spanish operator Hispasat using a Soyuz launch vehicle.

Designated Flight VS16 in Arianespace’s launcher family numbering system, this mission will be the first-ever mission to geostationary transfer orbit performed by Soyuz from the Guiana Space Center in French Guiana.

Hispasat 36W-1 is the first satellite to be built using Europe’s new “SmallGEO” platform developed by OHB System AG (Germany) under ESA’s ARTES (Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems) program.

The launch will be from the Soyuz Launch Complex (ELS) in Sinnamary, French Guiana.

The launcher will be carrying a total payload of 3,343 kg.

The Launch Readiness Review (LRR) will take place on Thursday, January 26, 2017 in Kourou, to authorize the start of operations for the final countdown.

Hispasat 36W-1 is a telecommunications satellite for Hispasat, and the first to be built using Europe’s new “SmallGEO” platform.

Hispasat is the Spanish satellite communications operator, a leader in the distribution of content in Spanish and Portuguese. With more than 25 years’ experience, the Hispasat Group maintains an important presence on the Iberian Peninsula and in Latin America, where it is now the fourth-largest satellite operator.

From its orbital position at 36 deg. West, Hispasat 36W-1 will allow Hispasat to provide a wide range of telecommunications services in Spain, Portugal, the Canary Islands and South America.

Hispasat 36W-1 was built by OHB System AG in Bremen, Germany, using a SmallGEO platform.

Developed by OHB System AG under ESA’s ARTES (Advanced Research in Telecommunications Systems) program, the SmallGEO platform line offers satellite operators an entirely European solution in the smaller telecom satellite market.

For further information, download the Flight VS16 Launch Kit by clicking here:

To watch a live, high-speed online transmission of the launch (including commentary from the launch site in French and English), go to on January 27, 2017, starting 20 minutes before liftoff.

You can also follow the launch live on your iPhone or iPad (the Arianespace HD app is free).

Mission VS16 : premier lancement de Soyuz depuis le Centre spatial guyanais vers l’orbite géostationnaire au service d’Hispasat
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