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Falcon Eye 1, 2

Falcon Eye [Astrium]

United Arab Emirates Armed Forces on July 22 contracted with Astrium Satellites and Thales Alenia Space of France to provide the two-satellite Falcon Eye high-resolution optical reconnaissance system.

The satellites are based on the upgraded versions of the French Pléiades-HR earth observation satellites. They feature the HiRI (High-Resolution Imager) imaging system with a ground resolution of 70 cm across a 20 km swath.

The satellites, weighing less than 1,500 kg each are to be launched on two separate Vega rockets in 2019 by Arianespace.

The first satellite was launched on 11 July 2019, but failed to reach orbit. In the aftermath of the Vega failure, the Emirates requested Arianespace to transfer the second satellite to a Soyuz-ST Fregat version.

Nation: United Arab Emirates
Type / Application: Reconnaissance, optical
Operator: United Arab Emirates Armed Forces
Contractors: EADS Astrium → Airbus Defence and Space (prime), Thales Alenia (payload)
Equipment: HiRI
Configuration: AstroSat-1000
Propulsion: 4 × 15 Nms hydrazine thrusters
Power: 3 deployable solar arrays, batteries
Lifetime: 5 years
Mass: 1197 kg (#1); 1190 kg (#2)
Orbit: 597 km × 598 km, 97.87° (#2)
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Falcon Eye 1 2019-F05 11.07.2019 Ko ELV Vega Failed
Falcon Eye 2 2020-090A 02.12.2020 Ko ELS Soyuz-ST-A Fregat-M

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