Into orbit with Antonov Airlines

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Antonov Airlines has flown a communications satellite from India to French Guiana in one of its AN-124-100 aircraft. The Indian Space Research Organisation’s GSAT-31 weighed 18,000kg including its specialised container and was launched earlier this month from the Guiana Space Centre on an Ariane 5 ECA launch vehicle.

The carrier worked closely with Flywell Aviation to meet all ISRO’s requirements. The first satellite in the series, the GSAT-11, was transported by Antonov Airlines on the same route in October 2018, and the final satellite is set to be delivered later this year.