Another two Galileo FOC satellites successfully launched
Bremen/Kourou, December 17, 2015. Known as “Andriana” and “Liene”, another two Galileo FOC* satellites developed and built by OHB System AG have been successfully launched on board a Soyuz launcher, which lifted off from the Kourou space center in French-Guiana today at 12:51 hours CET.
Less than four hours later they reached their planned orbit at an altitude of around 23,000 kilometers. Shortly after they sent their first “sign of life” to the French control center in Toulouse. Over the next few days, the two satellites will be undergoing preliminary function testing.
Executive board member, Dr. Ingo Engeln, responsible for navigation says: “Following the successful initialisation, a stable connection with the two satellites has been established and the solar panels have been unfolded and correctly aligned towards the sun. All the previously launched Galileo FOC satellites have already demonstrated their full functional and performance capabilities. Our satellite production in Bremen and environmental tests in Noordwijk are proceeding according to schedule.”
In the coming week, the Galileo control center in Oberpfaffenhofen will take over responsibility for controlling Andriana and Liene on behalf of ESA and the European Commission. Later on also the payloads supplied by SSTL will be set in operation from Oberpfaffenhofen.
OHB System AG being the industrial prime contractor is responsible for supplying a total of 22 Galileo FOC navigation satellites. Today’s successful launch brings the number of OHB-built satellites in orbit to a new total of eight, with a further 14 to follow. OHB in Bremen is using seven islands in parallel for the production of the Galileo FOC satellites. In the meantime, mechanical integration of the final satellite, Number 22, at the first production island has been successfully completed.