Glossary

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Aestus Engine of the Ariane-5 upper storable propellant stage
Apogee Furthest point from Earth of an orbit
Ariane launch zone Area at Europe’s Spaceport from where the Ariane 5 lifts off
Attitude The orientation of a spacecraft in relation to its direction of motion
BAF see Final Assembly Building
BEAP see Booster Engine Test Stand
BIL see Launcher Integration Building
BIP see Booster Integration Building
Booster Boosters are added to a launcher to provide the main thrust at liftoff - they consist of a casing containing the propellant, a solid rocket motor and additional equipment such as the igniter and the forward skirt equipped with a recovery system
Etage d'accéleration à poudre (EAP)
Booster Casing Preparation Building Building at the Spaceport where the booster casings are prepared
Batiment préparation étage (BPE)
Booster Engine Test Stand Place where booster engines are tested at Europe's Spaceport
Banc d'essais des accélération à poudre (BEAP)
Booster Integration Building Building at the Spaceport where the integration of the Ariane-5 solid booster stage takes place
Bâtiment d'intégration des propulseurs (BIP)
Booster Separation Rockets These separate the booster from the launch vehicle after approximately two minutes flight
Booster Storage Building Place at Europe's Spaceport where the boosters are stored until needed
Bâtiment Stockage Etage (BSE)
BSE Bâtiment stockage Etage see Booster Storage Building
CNES Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales, French Space Agency
Constellation Space network composed of multiple small satellites, generally placed in low Earth or intermediary orbits
Cryogenic propulsion High performance propulsion that uses liquid hydrogen propellant and liquid oxygen as oxydiser
CSG Centre Spatial Guyanais - Guiana Space Centre also known as Europe's Spaceport
DAAR Dispositif d'Accrochage Arrière - Rear booster attachment and release mechanism
DAAV Dispositif d'Accrochage Avant - Forward booster attachment and release mechanism
EAP Etage Accélérateur à Poudre - see booster
ELA-3 Ariane-5 launch complex containing the Launcher Integration Building, the Final Assembly Building, the Solid Propellant Booster Integration Building and the propellant plants
EPC Etage Principal Cryogénique - see Main cryogenic stage
EPCU S5 Ensemble de Préparation des Charges Utiles - see Satellite Preparation Facility
EPS see Storable propellant stage
ESA European Space Agency
Fairing Used to protect satellites before and during the launch, and while crossing the lower levels of the atmosphere; it is jettisoned once the launcher leaves the Earth's orbit
Final Assembly Building Place at Europe's Spaceport where the launcher is finally assembled with the payload and checks are carried out
Bâtiment d'Assemblage Final (BAF)
GEO see Geostationary orbit
Geostationary orbit An orbit which circles the Earth above the equator from east to west at an attitude of 36 000 km (GEO)
Geostationary transfer orbit An elliptical orbit whose apogee is at approximately 36 000 km, used to place a satellite into GEO (GTO)
GTO see Geostationary transfer orbit
Guiana Space Centre The French Space Centre in French Guiana also known as Europe's Spaceport
Centre Spatial Guyanais (CSG)
Hydrazine A colourless basic liquid made from sodium hypochlorite and ammonia used chiefly as a rocket fuel
Interstage This provides the mechanical interface between two launcher stages and also hosts the separation device, the thrust vector control electrical unit and the batteries
Jupiter Control Centre Ariane-5 mission control building
Launch zone The launcher is transferred to this area 48 hours before launch for final propellant filling, countdown and launch
Launcher Integration Building Place at Europe's Spaceport where the launcher's main stage is integrated with the boosters
Bâtiment d'Intégration Lanceur (BIL)
LEO see Low Earth orbit
LH2 Plant Facilities at Europe's Spaceport for producing liquid hydrogen for the Ariane-5 main cryogenic stage engine
Low Earth orbit Generally considered to be an orbit at an altitude of 400 to 1000 km (LEO)
LOX Plant Facilities at Europe's Spaceport for producing liquid oxygen for the Ariane-5 main stage and the Vulcain engine
Main cryogenic stage The main cryogenic stage of the Ariane 5 includes the cryogenic tank and the Vulcain engine; the duration of burnout is about 10 mins - the time needed for the launcher to leave the Earth's atmosphere
Etage Principal Cryotechnique (EPC)
MPS Moteur Propergol Solide - the booster's solid rocket motor
Orbit The path followed by a satellite around a celestial body
P80 solid rocket motor Vega's first stage motor with a combustion time of 107 s
Payload The useful mass that can be carried and injected into orbit by a launcher; it could be a satellite, a module or a capsule
Payload adapters A device used to support satellites
Perigee Point of an orbit closest to the Earth
Polar orbit An orbit that passes over the polar regions from north to south
Satellite Preparation Facility Complex at Europe's Spaceport where satellites are prepared for launch
Ensemble de preparation de charges utiles (EPCU S5)
Skirt Structure that joins together two parts of a launcher's or booster's stage and which transmits mechanical forces from the engine to the other structures of the launcher
Solid Booster Integration Building Place at Europe's Spaceport where booster segments are integrated
Bâtiment d'intégration des propulseurs (BIP)
Solid rocket motor Motor of the Ariane-5 solid propellant booster (MPS)
Soyuz launch zone Area at Europe's Spaceport from where the Russian Federeation Soyuz launcher will lift off in 2007
Speltra Multiple launch carrier structure that supports the upper payload and encapsulates the lower payload, protecting it from acoustic vibrations and thermal flow
Stage Term used for a complete element of a launch vehicle, i.e. propellant tank, one or more engines and electrical, mechanical or pneumatic equipment
Storable propellant stage This is the Ariane-5 upper stage - after 25 mins of thrust this reaches the orbiting speed of 28 000 km/h needed to release satellites into GTO
Etage à propergols stockables (EPS)
SSO see Sun-synchronous orbit
Sun-synchronous orbit A polar orbit which is synchronous with the Sun, usually at an altitude of between 600-800 km (SSO)
Sylda-5 Multiple launch carrier structure housed inside the fairing - the Sylda 5 is smaller than the Speltra
Technical Centre Administration buildings and control rooms at the Spaceport
Telemetry Telecommunication of the readings of measuring instruments to a device on which the readings can be indicated or recorded
UPG Solid-propellant plant at Europe's Spaceport
Usine de propergol de Guyane (UPG)
VEB see Vehicle equipment bay
Vega A European launcher schedule to make its first flight in 2006 from Europe's Spaceport
Vega launch zone Area at Europe's Spaceport from where Vega will lift off
Vega AVUM upper stage Upper stage of Vega consisting of a liquid propellant system, an attitude control system and the core of Vega's avionics system
Vehicle equipment bay The brains of an Ariane-5 launcher, this groups the main electronic elements that control the launcher
Vulcain engine Cryogenic engine of the Ariane-5G main stage
Zefiro 23 solid rocket motor The Vega second stage motor with a combustion time of 71.6 s
Zefiro 9 solid rocket motor Vega 3rd stage solid rocket motor with a combustion time of 110 s
ZL Zone de lancement see Launch zone
ZLA see Ariane 5 launch zone
ZLS see Soyuz launch zone
ZLV see Vega launch zone

Last update: 15 June 2004

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