Ariane launch aborted because of last-minute fault

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 30, 2011 6:41 PM

CAYENNE, French Guiana (Reuters) - An Ariane rocket launch carrying two satellites was aborted because of a technical hitch at the scheduled moment of liftoff in French Guiana on Wednesday, space officials said.

"We will now have to test and see why the abort took place and when liftoff will be possible," said Jean-Yves Le Gall, Arianespace president.

Aboard the rocket was the Yahsat Y1A for Al Yah Satellite Communications Company PrJsc of the United Arab Emirates, and Intelsat New Dawn for New Dawn Satellite Company Ltd., a joint venture between Intelsat and South African partners.

The aborted launch was from the European Space Agency's launch site in Kourou, French Guiana on the northeast coast of South America.

(Reporting by Franck Leconte in French Guiana and Alexander Miles 33 6 21-48-22-07)