Despite indicators simply a couple of days earlier that releases as quickly as later on this month were on track as planned, Arianespace revealed on Monday that they made the tough call to suspend operations at the Guiana Area Center, Europe’s spaceport located in French Guiana. This includes suspending any launch campaigns presently on the calendar in the instant future, like the Vega rocket objective bring multiple satellites set for March 24 and the Soyuz rocket Falcon Eye mission set for April 14.
Arianespace says that the “requirement to completely implement the steps chosen by the French Federal government” is the primary factor behind its choice to suspend launch campaign operations. The company also states it is taking this action in order “to secure the health of workers and the regional population, while likewise preserving the security required to prepare for scheduled launches.”
In order to help with the shut down and ensure that things are ready to go whenever conditions permit things to resume securely, the French area agency is working with Arianespace and all the companies included on both the launch automobile and payload side to secure the spacecraft and cargo in standby mode. There’s no information on when things may resume, however that’s easy to understand offered the circumstances.
Release activities from other global area firms and launch service providers do not seem specifically affected yet– SpaceX tried a launch on Sunday, which was terminated for technical factors, however that might be rescheduled for as early as mid-week. On the other hand, a Chinese Long March rocket looks to be readying for take-off today, and ULA still seems to be tracking towards a March 26 launch of an Area Force interactions satellite.