ILS DELAYS PROTON LAUNCH OF EUTELSAT 5 WEST B / MISSION EXTENSION VEHICLE-1
BAIKONUR COSMODROME, Kazakhstan, 24 September 2019 – The launch of a Proton launch vehicle with the EUTELSAT 5 West B / Mission Extension Vehicle-1 satellites scheduled for 30 September was postponed today due to an issue encountered during electrical testing of the Integrated Launch Vehicle. The issue is currently under investigation by Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center (Khrunichev).
Khrunichev and International Launch Services (ILS) will reestablish a new launch date once the issue has been resolved. The vehicle and satellite remain in a safe configuration.
Proton-M launch scheduled for October 9
Previously delayed launch of the Proton-M launch vehicle with European satellite Eutelsat-5WB and the US MEV-1 is scheduled for October 9 at 13:17 Moscow time, according to the state commission’s decision, a source in the rocket and space industry told TASS on Friday.
"By the decision of the state commission, which met on Friday, the launch of Proton-M with foreign satellites is scheduled for October 9 at 13:17 Moscow time," the source said.
Roscosmos confirmed to TASS the information about postponing the launch of Proton-M for October 9.
Initially, the rocket launch with commercial satellites was scheduled for September 30, but was postponed due to additional tests of the control system for the upper stage.
Launch of Proton-M rocket carrying two telecom satellites scheduled for Oct 9 - Roscosmos
MOSCOW. - A Proton-M carrier rocket has been installed on a launch site at the Baikonur Cosmodrome; it is to place into orbit the Eutelsat 5 West B and Mission Extension Vehicle-1 telecom satellites, Roscosmos said.
The rocket's launch is due at 1:17:56 p.m. Moscow time on October 9, the Russian state corporation Roscosmos said on Saturday.
"This morning, October 5, as per the work schedule, a space rocket was transported from the filling ground to the launch site of Ground No 200 of the Cosmodrome. After the rocket's vertical orientation was completed, a servicing unit was brought up to it and the designated staff from Roscosmos firms started operations scheduled for the day," Roscosmos said.
The rocket was due to blast off from the Baikonur on September 30 but then on September 24, Roscosmos said that its launch had been moved to a later date.
Roscosmos head Dmitry Rogozin said at a press conference on September 25 that the launch of a Proton-M rocket had been postponed until mid-October due to some problems in the interaction between the rocket's systems and foreign satellites on board.
The rocket was due to put Eutelsat 5 West B and MEV-1 satellites into orbit. Eutelsat 5 West B will replace Eutelsat 5 West A in orbit and provide telecom services in France, Italy, and Algeria.
MEV-1 (Mission Extension Vehicle) is the first of its kind. It may dock with Intelsat 901 satellites and provide them with servicing to extend their operation in orbit.
Proton-M carrying commercial satellites delivered to Baikonur’s launch pad
The Proton-M carrier rocket with the Briz-M booster carrying the European communication satellite Eutelsat 5 West B and the US technological spacecraft Mission Extension Vehicle-1 has been delivered to the launch complex of the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Russia’s state space corporation Roscosmos said in a statement on Saturday.
"On October 5, according to the working schedule the space rocket was transported from the technological fueling pad to the pad No.200 launch complex of the cosmodrome," the statement said.
Following the rocket erection, the service tower was moved to the vehicle, and Roscosmos enterprises' specialists started working according to the schedule of the first launch day.
Initially the launch of the rocket with commercial satellites was scheduled for September 30, though it was postponed due to additional tests of the control system for the upper stage. Later a source in the space rocket industry explained to TASS that the launch had been postponed because the US satellite was not attached correctly to the upper stage.
Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin confirmed to reporters that the launch had been postponed due to the problem related to the booster control system. On September 27, the state commission decided to postpone the launch for October 9 at 1:17 pm Moscow time.
Russia’s Proton-M rocket with foreign satellites blasts off from Baikonur spaceport
A Proton-M carrier rocket with a Breeze-M booster blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to deliver a European Eutelsat-5WB and a US MEV-1 satellite into orbit, according to an online broadcast on the website of Russia’s State Space Corporation Roscosmos.
The upper part of the Proton-M rocket with the booster and the two satellites is set to separate from the third stage 582.3 seconds (about ten minutes) after the liftoff.
After that, the Breeze-M will fire its engines five times to deliver the satellites into the designated orbits.
The Eutelsat 5WB is set to separate from the booster 15 hours and 36 minutes after the launch, at 04:53 a.m. Moscow time on October 10, while the US MEV-1 will detach several minutes after that, at 05:12 a.m. Moscow time.
The delivery of the satellites into their designated orbits, from the blast-off to their separation, will take a record 15 hours and 54 minutes. Roscosmos explained to TASS that such a lengthy delivery was related to the satellites’ orbits.
The previous record was set by an ExoMars probe launched in March 2016 with the help of a Proton-M rocket. The rocket’s Breeze-M booster injected the interplanetary station into its flight path to Mars in about 11 hours.
Initially, the liftoff was scheduled for September 30, 2019 but was delayed due to the need to hold further tests of the booster’s control system. A source in the domestic space industry explained to TASS that the launch was delayed because the US satellite was attached incorrectly to the upper stage.
Roscosmos Head Dmitry Rogozin confirmed to reporters that a problem linked with the interface between the Russian control system and the satellites’ electronics was the cause of the launch’s delay. On September 27, the state commission made a decision to reschedule the launch for October 9.
International Launch Services Company signed a contract with the Eutelsat European satellite communications operator in 2016 for the launch of a Proton-M carrier rocket with a paired payload comprising the Eutelsat-5Wb and the first satellite to extend the service life of MEV-1 space vehicles.
Update: 9.10.2019 / 20.15 MESZ
Update: 20.45 MESZ