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Space
Arianespace signs Japanese launch contract
Arianespace signs Japanese launch contract
© Arianespace

| Staff writer

Arianespace signs Japanese launch contract

During its annual Japan Week event in Tokyo, Arianespace announced the signature of a contract to launch the Horizons 3e satellite, operated by SKY Perfect JSAT and Intelsat through a joint venture.

Arianespace has worked with Japan for 31 years, signing 31 launch contracts for Japanese operators. Its order book comprises 100% of the country’s upcoming commercial geostationary satellites, including BSAT-4a, to be launched this summer.

Since orbiting JCSAT-1 in 1989, Arianespace has launched a total of 28 geostationary satellites for the Japanese operators SKY Perfect JSAT and B-SAT. It also has launched five satellites built in Japan: three under the responsibility of Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (MELCO) and two under the responsibility of NEC (NEC Space Technologies, formerly NEC Toshiba Space Systems).  The company holds a 74% market share in Japan for geostationary satellites.

Arianespace has announced two new contracts from Japan in 2017, for two telecommunications satellites:

• JCSAT-17, on behalf of SKY Perfect JSAT, to be orbited by an Ariane 5 heavy launcher from the Guiana Space Center, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana, in 2019.

• Horizons 3e for SKY Perfect JSAT and Intelsat, through a joint venture, to be launched by an Ariane 5 starting in late 2018.

Arianespace plans a total of 12 launches in 2017, seven by Ariane 5, three by Vega and two by Soyuz. Three of these launches already have been successfully performed:

• Hispasat 36W-1 on Soyuz (27th January),

• SKY Brasil-1 and Telkom 3S on Ariane 5 (14th February),

• Sentinel-2B on Vega (6th March).

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