Arianespace has successfully launched Emirates observation satellite FalconEye, using a Soyuz launcher launched from Guiana Space Center
FalconEye 2 launch was waited, after many failures since about a year : Lost of reconnaissance satellite Falcon Eye, using european launcher Vega ; lockdown in Guyana due to Covid crisis ; damages on Fregat upper stage ; failure of VV17 Vega last month ; weather ; and problems for data reception. Therefore, Arianespace VS24 flight was waited.
The launch was made on Tuesday, December 1, at 10.33 PM (local time) (1h33 UTC) ; a launcher Soyouz STA/Fregat M was used for it. Satellite was deployed 58 minutes and 45 seconds after liftoff to a helio-synchronous orbit of 611 km. Satellite Falcon Eye 2 weighs approximately 1,2 tons, and is the Twin brother of the satellite lost in July 2019
Both satellites were built by Airbus Defence and Space ; Thales Alenia Space supplied optical payloads. They operates for United Arab Emirates Armed Forces.
Two other Soyouz missions
VS24 mission was the third were Arianespace used Soyouz satellite ; and the first were Guyana Space Center was used.
Two other Soyouz missions are planned, until the end of this year : ST29, for the deployment of another OneWeb satellite, from Vostochny cosmodrome (Siberia, Russia) ; and VS25 for the launch of the second French military satellite CSO (Optical Space Component) from Guyana.