|Launcher||Ariane 1||Ariane 2||Ariane 3||Ariane 4||Ariane 5|
|Launch mass||210 t||219 t||234 t||243 to 480 t||750 to 780 t|
|Geostationary transfer orbit lift capacity||1.75 t||2.20 t||2.60 t||2 to 4.8 t||6.9 to 10 t|
|Thrust*||250 t||270 t||270 t||270 to 540 t||1 200 to 1 300 t|
|Height||47.4 m||49 m||49 m||59 m||47 to 57 m|
* Thrust is measured in kilo-newtons (kN) but is commonly expressed in tonnes. To interpret the value of a force expressed in kN, divide it by ten to obtain a figure roughly corresponding to the mass (in tonnes) that the force can lift.
** Figures on 1st January, 2010
Designed by Snecma Moteurs, it weighs 1,650 kg and is delivers 20 times more thrust than the engine on Ariane 4.
New technologies were incorporated into its design, including a new copper alloy for the combustion chamber, high-strength materials for the turbopumps and high-power supersonic turbines.
Vulcain 2 is an upgraded version of the engine, designed for Ariane 5 ECA, providing a 20% performance gain.
Modular upper section
made of 2 half-shells, the fairing protects the payloads on ascent through the atmosphere; it is jettisoned about 3 min into the flight
- vehicle equipment bay (VEB):
this is the launcher’s electronic brain, containing all the instructions necessary for flight; it controls and corrects the launcher’s position if needed, commands engine cut-off, stage separation and so on
- Sylda 5:
bearing structure accommodating 2 separate payloads; for some missions the ASAP platform is used and supports up to 8 microsatellites
- upper stage:
housed inside the upper section, this is the only stage not ignited at lift-off; once above the dense atmosphere, it provides the additional thrust necessary to place the payload in orbit
ESC-A burns liquid oxygen and hydrogen, whereas EPS uses other liquid propellants (mono-methyl-hydrazine and nitrogen peroxide).
|Did you know ?|
|Ariane 5 ECA :|
Kourou launch site
The site’s ideal location at 5° north of the equator takes advantage of the Earth’s rotational speed to place satellites into geostationary orbit.
For the 1st time since the creation of the Guiana Space Centre (CSG), industrial facilities working directly on launcher manufacture and integration have been installed on site in French Guiana.
Between 1988 and 1996, a complete assembly line and launch facility was built at Kourou.
This facility comprises the factories and buildings for production of solid booster stages, as well as assembly of launcher elements and preparation of payloads, and ground tracking infrastructure (Jupiter control centre and TTC network).