July 16

Europe's Spaceport, back to business

Sciences, Space

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Workers are returning to Europe’s Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana to resume preparations for Vega and Ariane 5 launches. Construction of the new Ariane 6 launch pad has also restarted.

COVID-19 lockdown measures introduced in March meant that all but safety-critical operations were suspended at the Spaceport and the vast site had to be secured. Strict new safety and hygiene procedures have now been introduced. Launch teams returning from mainland Europe will spend two weeks in quarantine.

Vega is due to return to flight this summer on its first rideshare mission dedicated to small satellites using a new dispenser called the Small Spacecraft Mission Service.

A-roll contains a new interview with ESA’s Director of Space Transportation, Daniel Neuenschwander, March 2020 drone video of the Ariane 6 launch pad, recently shot phone footage of COVID-19 safety measures and a rare tour underground of the new Ariane 6 launch facilities.

B-roll also contains further smartphone footage of the Spaceport and additional drone and helicopter footage of the Kourou facilities.

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