2 x Galileo

Launch Overview

Liftoff Time
December 2023 (00:00 UTC)

Complex Overview

Launch Facility
Kourou, French Guiana
Launch Pad
Ariane Launch Area 4

Who is Arianespace?

Arianespace SA is a multinational company founded in 1980 as the world's first commercial launch service provider. It undertakes the operation, and marketing of the Ariane programme. Their vehicles launch exclusively from French Guiana in South America.

What Is Ariane 62?

Ariane 6 is an expendable launch vehicle currently being developed by ArianeGroup for the European Space Agency. It will replace Ariane 5 as the primary heavy-lift launch vehicle for Europe. The first flight was originally planned for 2020 while in 2019 but now the original flight is expected to be in late 2023/2024.

Equipped Solid Rockets


Image credit: CNES/ESA/Arianespace/CSG Video Optics/JM Guillon

Ariane 6 can be equipped with either two or four Equipped Solid Rockets (ESR). The ESR are P120C solid rocket boosters (SRB) developed by Avio and ArianeGroup. Each P120C has approximately 142 tonnes (313,000 lb) of propellant and can produce 4,650 kN of thrust. When Ariane 6 has two ESR it's called Ariane 62 and when it has four ESR it's called Ariane 64.

Each P120C is 11.7 metres tall and 3.5 metres wide. A future upgrade of the P120C, called P120C+, is planned to make it slightly taller for extra thrust. The "C" in P120C stands for "Common" as the booster is also used on the Vega-C and Vega-E launchers.

Lower Liquid Propulsion Module


Image credit: CNES/ESA/Arianespace/CSG Video Optics/JM Guillon, 2022

The first stage is called the Lower Liquid Propulsion Module (LLPM). It's powered by a single Vulcain 2.1 engine burning liquid hydrogen (LH2) and liquid oxygen (LOX). Vulcain 2.1 is an upgraded version of the Vulcain 2 used on the Ariane 5 rocket. It boasts lower manufacturing costs than Vulcain 2. The LLPM is 5.4 metres wide.

Upper Liquid Propulsion Module


Image credit: ESA - S. Corvaja

The second stage is called the Upper Liquid Propulsion Module (ULPM). It's powered by the Vinci engine which produces 180 kN of thrust. Vinci also burns liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen like the LLPM. Unlike the ECA upper stage on Ariane 5, ULPM will be able to have multiple restarts. The stage shares the same diameter as the LLPM.





The Vinci engine is an expander cycle engine using liquid hydrogen (LH2) and liquid oxygen (LOX) as its fuel and oxidiser. Its biggest improvement from its predecessor, the MH7B, which powers the ESC-A stage on the Ariane 5 rocket, is the capability of restarting multiple times.

Mission Overviw

Payload consists of two satellites for Europe's Galileo navigation system.

Mission Type

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