Watch the launch of Galileos 15–18
Two flagship European space programmes will combine on 17 November, as four Galileo navigation satellites are carried into orbit by an Ariane 5 rocket for the first time.
Liftoff of Ariane flight VA233 took place 13:06 GMT (14:06 CET, 10:06 local time) on Thursday.
At orbital injection the launcher will have attained an altitude of 22 925 km, about 300 km below the satellites’ operational altitude. The four satellites will manoeuvre themselves up to this height, leaving the upper stage safely in a ‘graveyard orbit’.
The next Livestream transmission is at 16:30–17:45 GMT (17.30–18.45 CET), to cover the satellite separations and confirmation of success.