Tour the new launch complex for Ariane 6 at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.
First, enter the launch vehicle assembly building which is 20 m tall, 112 m long, and 41 m wide, located a kilometre away from the launch zone. It is used for horizontal integration and preparation of the central core of Ariane 6 – its main stage and upper stage – before it is rolled out to the launch zone.
The hydrogen and oxygen storage facilities connect to the launch pad via underground pipes as part of the launch support systems.
The 8200 tonne 90 metre-high mobile gantry rolls on rails. Its platforms enable engineers to access the vehicle for integration of the boosters around the core stage and for mounting the fairing containing the payload on top of the upper stage. This steel mobile gantry protects Ariane 6 before launch and is rolled back prior to liftoff.
At the entrance of the gantry is a mockup Ariane 6 P120C rocket booster. This is representative of one of the real boosters, having the same size and mass but filled with water instead of solid propellant and used in mechanical tests.
Four lightning protection masts, and a water tower for the deluge system are also part of the launch pad.