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SIXTH METEOSAT SATELLITE FOR ARIANE

The International Organization Eumetsat has Selected Arianespace for the Launch of its METEOSAT 7 Satellite. The European Space Agency has Already Called on Europe's ARIANE Launcher for Five METEOSAT Spacecraft.
 WASHINGTON, July 15 /PRNewswire/ -- John Morgan, general director of the European Meteorological Satellite Organization, Eumetsat, and Charles Bigot, chairman and chief executive officer of Arianespace, signed a contract today in Darmstadt, Germany, for the launch of Europe's METEOSAT 7 satellite.
 Five satellites, from METEOSAT 2 to METEOSAT 6, have been or will be carried into orbit by ARIANE launchers between June 1981 and November 1993 for the European Space Agency. ESA subsequently transfers the operation of the spacecraft to the Eumetsat organization. METEOSAT 7 will be directly operated by Eumetsat. METEOSAT 7 will be placed into a geostationary transfer orbit by an ARIANE launch vehicle in late 1995 or early 1996 from the Kourou Space Center in French Guiana.
 The METEOSAT 7 spacecraft constitutes the Meteosat Transition Program (MTP) between the end of the Meteosat Operational Program (MOP) in December 1995 and the second-generation METEOSAT satellites, scheduled to appear in the year 2000. The satellite is being built by Aerospatiale, using a MOP platform. It will have a mass at liftoff of about 750 kg.
 Bigot emphasized the importance of the first contract signed directly with Eumetsat: "As the world leader in space transport, Arianespace guarantees free access to space for Europe under the best possible conditions. This makes us particularly pleased to be able to provide our services to the European Meteorological Satellite Organization. We are also extremely proud to have earned the confidence of this operator for the launch of a sixth satellite by ARIANE. This cooperation once again confirms the continuity and consistency of Europe's space policy."
 Arianespace, an industrial and commercial company, is a world leader in the provision of commercial space transportation services. Arianespace also markets and sells Ariane launch services and provides launch operations from the Guiana Space Center in French Guiana. Arianespace Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Arianespace, is responsible for marketing launch services in the United States; a liaison office in Tokyo assures an Arianespace presence in Japan and in the Pacific region.
 -0- 7/15/93
 /CONTACT: Michelle Lyle of Arianespace Inc., 202-628-3936; Claude Sanchez of Arianespace S.A., 33/1-6087-60-13/14; or Dieter Brand of Arianespace Tokyo, 813-3592-2766/


CO: Arianespace; Eumetsat ST: District of Columbia IN: ARO SU:

MH-TW -- DC019 -- 1965 07/15/93 12:37 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 15, 1993
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