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European rocket launches telecom satellites

Image: Ariane 5 launch
An Ariane 5 rocket lifts off from its launch pad in French Guiana on Friday, carrying two telecommunication satellites into orbit.ESA
/ Source: The Associated Press

Arianespace has launched two satellites from the South American country of French Guiana that will provide telecommunication services to the Eastern Hemisphere.

The ASTRA 2F will provide direct-to-home broadcast services to Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The GSAT-10 satellite will serve the Indian Space Research Organization and provide direct-to-home broadcasting and radio-navigation services.

Both satellites have a lifespan of 15 years.

The Ariane 5 launcher was carrying a total of 22,500 pounds when it placed both satellites into orbit Friday.

Arianespace has 21 shareholders from 10 European countries, including France's CNES space agency.