Arianespace has won two more launch contracts, for Inmarsat and the European Space Agency (ESA).

This success follows the company's earlier announcement at the show of a deal with PanAmSat for the launch of three spacecraft.

Inmarsat Ventures has signed a letter of intent for a launch services contract covering at least one of its four Inmarsat 4 communications satellites, with an indication that further options would be taken up. The Inmarsat launches will take place in 2003-4, Arianespace says. The Inmarsat satellites, weighing more than 6,000kg each, are being built by Astrium.

Arianespace has received confirmation that ESA will use an Ariane 5 to launch its Rosetta comet-lander mission in January 2003. The signings bring to 51 the number of satellites in the Arianespace orderbook. The company's largest-ever backlog, this tally puts it well ahead of its competition.

Source: Flight Daily News