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Arianespace delays launch of Ariane 5 Flight VA236 due to ‘social movement’

21 Mar 2017, 01:00 UTC
Arianespace delays launch of Ariane 5 Flight VA236 due to ‘social movement’
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File photo of an Ariane 5 in the Final Assembly Building (BAF). Photo Credit: Arianespace / ESA
Arianespace has announced a 24-hour delay, at least, of Flight VA236 due to a “social movement” at The Spaceport in French Guiana. It is not entirely clear what constitutes a “social movement”, though there are reports that indicate the workers who are responsible for the rollout of the vehicle to the ELA-3 launch site called for a strike.
If, indeed, there is a labor issue, it would not be the first time the commercial launch provider has been the target of a work stoppage. In 2011, Arianespace had to delay an Ariane 5 launch due to a strike within a different organization at the launch site, resulting in a 24-hour setback to the liftoff.
The launch vehicle and its pair of communications satellites remain secure in the Final Assembly Building (BAF) at The Spaceport, with rollout to the pad tentatively delayed by 24 hours.
Encapsulated in the Ariane’s protective fairing are the SGDC and KOREASAT-7 telecommunications satellites. Once launched, they will each serve the communications and entertainment needs of people on opposite sides of the globe, as well as providing secure governmental data ...

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