European Soyuz Update

The European Soyuz on the launchpad in Kourou.

The first Soyuz to take off from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana was moved to the launch pad on Saturday 14 October. The rocket that will carry the first two Galileo navigation satellites into orbit is on track for liftoff on 20 October. The Launch Readiness Review will take place on Wednesday 19 October. The three-stage Soyuz ST-B was rolled out horizontally on its erector from the preparation building using the 600 m-long railway that leads to the pad. The vehicle was then raised into its launch position. Earlier last week, the two Galileo In-Orbit Validation satellites, attached to their dispenser, were mated to the Fregat-MT upper stage and then enclosed in the fairing. This ‘Upper Composite’ was also transferred on Saturday 14 October and added onto the vehicle from above, completing the very first Soyuz on its launch pad at Europe’s Spaceport.

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About the author

Andrea Gini

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Andrea Gini is a content strategy consultant specialized in companies of the space sector. He is founder of Space Safety Magazine, where he held the position of Editor-in-Chief until March 2015. Between 2011 and 2013 he worked in the European Space Agency in the Independent Safety Office, which overviews the utilization of the International Space Station. He previously worked as Software Developer, IT Consultant, and trainer of Java-related technologies. Andrea holds a BSc and an MSc in computer science from the University of Milano, a Master in Communication of Science from the International School for Advanced Studies of Trieste and a MSc in Space Studies from the International Space University.