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Arianespace launches Vega rocket with PRISMA

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Arianespace's 14th Vega rocket launches PRISMA into space from the spaceport in French Guiana. Photo Credit: Arianespace

Arianespace’s 14th Vega rocket launches PRISMA into area from the spaceport in French Guiana. Photograph Credit score: Arianespace

An Arianespace Vega rocket launched an Italian House Company imaging satellite tv for pc into Earth orbit to display a brand new electro-optical instrument.

Liftoff happened at eight:50 p.m. EDT March 21 (01:50 GMT March 22), 2019, from the Guiana House Centre on the northern coast of South America. On the high of the four-stage rocket, encapsulated by a protecting payload fairing, was PRISMA, a 1,937-pound (879-kilogram) Italian Earth-observation satellite tv for pc.

“We’re very proud to proceed performing our major vocation of making certain unbiased entry to area for Europe, with a spotlight this night on Italy,” stated Arianespace CEO Stephane Israel in an organization statement. “Right now’s mission, carried out for the Italian area company, ASI, and the Italian trade consortium led by OHB Italia SpA and Leonardo SpA, illustrates the reliability of the Vega launcher, which has carried out its 14th profitable launch in a row. It additionally confirms the launcher’s attractiveness as a champion of the Earth remark market, since Arianespace now has 9 Vega and Vega C in its launch order backlog.”

PRISMA being integrated to a payload adapter before launch. Photo Credit: Arianespace

PRISMA being built-in to a payload adapter earlier than launch. Photograph Credit score: Arianespace

In line with Arianespace, PRISMA, which stands for “PRecursore IperSpettrale della Missione Applicativa” (in English, Hyperspectral Precursor of the Software Mission), is a “state-of-the-art electro-optical instrument” that combines a hyperspectral sensor with a panchromatic digicam. Over its five-year mission, it’s designed to take medium-resolution pictures to facilitate useful resource administration, crop identification and classification, and to battle in opposition to air pollution.

To ship the spacecraft into orbit, the 98-foot (30-meter) tall Vega rocket ignited its first of 4 levels. The P80 first stage was solid-fueled and burned for about 110 seconds.

Simply after the stage burned out and separated, the Zefiro 23 second stage ignited and burned for about 77 seconds earlier than additionally separating. On the conclusion of that burn, the third stage, known as Zefiro 9, additionally ignited and continued to burn for an additional 120 seconds.

Within the meantime, shortly after the ignition of the third stage, the payload fairing separated, exposing the PRISMA satellite tv for pc to the vacuum of area.

At round 6.5 minutes, the third stage completed burning and separated from the AVUM fourth stage. However earlier than it ignited, a quick coast interval happened to attend for the precise second to ignite its hypergolic-fuel-consuming RD-843 engine.

That point took place eight minutes after leaving South America. Upon ignition, the stage burned for about Four.5 minutes to position the spacecraft in a switch orbit earlier than one other 39-minute coast part started.

Lastly, at a mission-elapsed-time of 52 minutes, the AVUM stage ignited its engine once more for a roughly 72-second burn to position PRISMA in a 382-mile (615-kilometer) orbit, inclined about 97.88 levels relative to the equator.

Two minutes later, the PRISMA spacecraft separated to start its five-year mission.

“Arianespace is delighted to announce that PRISMA has been separated as deliberate on its focused Solar-synchronous orbit,” Luce Fabreguettes, Arianespace’s govt vice chairman of missions, operations and buying, stated in post-launch remarks. “There was no higher method for Vega to begin the 12 months 2019 than with its 14th success in a row. Congratulations to all.”

The flight was the third for Arianespace in 2019 and the primary for the Vega rocket this 12 months. PRISMA was additionally the 600th satellite tv for pc orbited by the corporate.

Arianespace’s subsequent launch is predicted to be on April Four, and can see a Soyuz 2.1b rocket ship 4 satellites into area for O3b Networks.

Video courtesy of SciNews



Derek Richardson has a level in mass media, with an emphasis in modern journalism, from Washburn College in Topeka, Kansas. Whereas at Washburn, he was the managing editor of the scholar run newspaper, the Washburn Evaluation. He additionally has a weblog concerning the Worldwide House Station, known as Orbital Velocity. He met with members of the SpaceFlight Insider staff through the flight of a United Launch Alliance Atlas V 551 rocket with the MUOS-Four satellite tv for pc. Richardson joined our staff shortly thereafter.

His ardour for area ignited when he watched House Shuttle Discovery launch into area Oct. 29, 1998. Right now, this fervor has accelerated towards orbit and reveals no indicators of slowing down. After dabbling in math and engineering programs in school, he quickly realized his true calling was speaking to others about area. Since becoming a member of SpaceFlight Insider in 2015, Richardson has labored to extend the standard of our content material, ultimately turning into our managing editor. @TheSpaceWriter

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