Photos: Ariane 5 Launcher Assembly for VA236 Mission

An Ariane 5 launch vehicle takes shape for its second mission in 2017 that will see the heavy-lift rocket lift a pair of communications satellites built by Thales Alenia Space for operators in Brazil and South Korea. Assembly of Europe’s workhorse launcher starts with the installation of the 30.5-meter long, 5.4m diameter core stage on one of two operational launch tables followed by the attachment of the twin Solid Rocket Boosters on either side of the cryogenic core. The final step is hoisting the second stage, already integrated with the Vehicle Equipment Bay, atop the core stage for installation, readying the rocket for transfer to the Final Assembly Building where the installation of the payload occurs.

All Photos: Arianespace/ESA/CNES/Optique Video du CSG