Guyana Space Center


January 27, 2022

The Guyana Space Center (CSG in French) is the largest spaceport in the European Union, next to Kourou in French Guiana.


The Center National d'Études Spatiales (CNES) was established on 19 December 1961. The state agency is responsible for defining and implementing France’s military and civilian space research program. To carry out the missile tests, an area had to be designated that would provide adequate safety for the environment (population, industrial facilities, livestock, environmental protection). This place was found in Hammaguir, Algeria. Here, under the supervision of the armed forces, a Joint Test Center for Special Weapons (Center interarmées d'essais d'engins spéciaux) was set up in the early 1960s. From there, the first French Astérix satellite was launched with a Diamant-A launch vehicle. Algeria, which became independent on March 19, 1962, claimed and received reimbursement for the operation of the base. The dynamically developing space research and the promotion of space research services required a new starting point where the selection criteria can best be ensured: polar or equatorial starting option, a tolerable climate with minimal hurricanes and earthquakes, adequate area, safe starting conditions, fall far from human habitation, have a seaport and adequate technical equipment, a runway length of at least 3000 meters, the necessary technical conditions can be set up (radar stations; telemetry antennas; infrastructure), As close as possible to Europe, politically stable region.The decision of 14 April 1964 was influenced by the proximity to the Equator, the security aspects of the east coast and the Atlantic. If the launch is to the east, the Earth's rotation will also "swing" on the spacecraft, so you don't have to design a rocket as strong as launching the spacecraft to the west. The surface of the Earth rotates at the Equator at its highest speed, so its swinging effect is significant. Kourou is only 5 ° 3 'from the Equator, and is one of the optimal places on Earth to launch a rocket (when launched east of this latitude, the planet's rotational speed is about 460 m / s, or 1700 km / h.) . [source?] The new French-operated spaceport north of Brazil was built near the port city of Kourou in French Guiana, South America. The city is home to the ancient and French population (administration, technicians, engineers, other professionals and family members). The region was home to the infamous penitentiaries, the Green Hell, in the 19th century, and has been an overseas department of France since 1946 and is now part of the EU. On April 9, 1968, the first high-altitude research missile was launched. From 1970 onwards, self-developed satellites were launched, with the exception of US and Soviet / Russian co-operation spacecraft. When the European Space Agency (ESA) was set up in 1975, the French shared the Kourou center with the rest of the ESA - in return, the European Space Agency pays two-thirds of the annual cost of the space airport. ESA has also made the improvements needed to launch the Ariane missiles. The space center has been shared between ESA and Arianespace since 1995. All Ariane rockets are launched from here. The launch stations for the Soyuz and Vega missiles have been under construction since 2006, with both models launching in Kourou in 2011. Launched from Baikonur, the Soyuz-2ST launcher has a payload of 1.7 tonnes

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