- First Arianespace’s mission of 2022 and OneWeb’s thirteenth launch, Soyuz Flight VS27 successfully put 34 additional constellation satellites into a near-polar orbit.
- In the course of 2022, Arianespace will continue to deploy OneWeb’s satellite network, which now comprises 428 satellites in low Earth orbit.
KOUROU, French Guiana (Arianespace PR) — Today’s launch, Flight VS27, was the first Arianespace’s mission of 2022 and the 340th launch overall for the Arianespace family of launchers Ariane, Soyuz and Vega. Performed on Thursday, February 10 at precisely 03:09 p.m. local time at Guiana Space Center (06:09 p.m. UTC), this mission orbited 34 OneWeb satellites bringing the size of the fleet in orbit to 428.
“2022 begins with the successful orbiting of 34 satellites for OneWeb. Congratulations to all the teams who made this thirteenth launch for OneWeb a success,” said Stéphane Israël, CEO of Arianespace. “More OneWeb missions are coming soon this year and will enable the start of the constellation’s global services. We are proud to contribute to the OneWeb project, which will increase connectivity on earth while treating space as a natural resource and being committed to protecting it.”
The OneWeb constellation will deliver high-speed, low-latency connectivity to a wide range of customer sectors, including aviation, maritime, backhaul services, and for governments, emergency response services and more. Central to its purpose, OneWeb seeks to bring connectivity to every place where fiber cannot reach, and thereby bridge the digital divide. Once deployed, the OneWeb constellation will work with user terminals that are capable of offering 3G, LTE, 5G and Wi-Fi coverage, providing high-speed access globally – by air, sea and land.
The satellite prime contractor is OneWeb Satellites, a joint venture of OneWeb and Airbus Defence and Space. The OneWeb satellites are the 531st to 564th Airbus Defence and Space satellites to be orbited by Arianespace. The satellites were produced in Florida, USA in its leading-edge satellite manufacturing facilities that can build up to two satellites per day on a series production line dedicated to spacecraft assembly, integration, and testing.
The medium-lift Soyuz (produced by Progress Space Rocket Center, part of the Russian State Space Corporation Roscosmos) entered service from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana in October 2011, bringing the industry’s longest-operating launcher to the world’s most modern launch base. Soyuz is a four-stage launcher, designed with extremely high reliability requirements for its wide range of missions, including human space flights.
VS27 in figures
The VS27 OneWeb satellites are:
- 1102nd to 1135th satellites launched by Arianespace;
- 68th to 101st satellites launched on Soyuz from CSG;
- 528th to 561st satellites launched on Soyuz by Arianespace and Starsem;
- 561st to 594th constellation satellites launched by Arianespace.