AsianScientist (Jan. 7, 2013) – Arianespace and Astrium today signed the launch contract for the VNREDSat-1A Earth observation satellite, on behalf of the Vietnamese Academy of Science and Technology.
This ceremony was attended by the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Director General and by representatives of the Directorate of Launchers, and comes at a time when Vietnam and France are celebrating their 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations.
VNREDSat-1A will be launched by Arianespace during the second quarter of 2013 by the second Vega launcher, VERTA 1, at the Guiana Space Center, French Guiana.
The satellite will be carried in the lower position on the Vespa multiple launch structure used for this mission.
An optical observation satellite, VNREDSat-1A will be injected into sun-synchronous orbit (SSO) at an altitude of 670 km. The 120-kg satellite is being built by Astrium, which will supply to Vietnam the complete satellite system and ground receiving facilities.
“We are especially proud of once again being able to work with Vietnam, following the successful launches of Vinasat-1 and -2 communications satellites. We are very pleased to be working once more with Astrium, after having launched five of their satellites during the last four months of 2012,” said Arianespace Chairman and CEO Jean-Yves Le Gall.
Vinasat-2 was flown into orbit by Arianespace’s Ariane-5 ECA rocket in May 2012, four years after its predecessor, Vinasat-1, was launched in 2008.