GE-2 & Nahuel 1A

Launch Time
Thu Jan 30, 1997 22:04 UTC

Flight V93.


Ariane 44L
Image Credit: Arianespace
Status: Retired
Liftoff Thrust: 6,000 kN
Payload to GTO: 4,720 kg
Stages: 3
Strap-ons: 4
Rocket Height: 58.72 m

Mission Details


GE-2, or AMC-2 (after 2001), is a privately owned American communications satellite launched in 1997. It was the first of the GE Series to be launched outside the United States. It was launched by an Ariane 4 on January 30, 1997, flying from ELA-2, Guiana Space Center alongside another Satellite, Nahuel 1A. It was owned by GE Americom until 2001 when the company was sold to SES (Société Européenne des Satellites). The name of the spacecraft was then changed by SES to AMC 2.

GE-2 carries 24-Ku-Band and 24 C-Band transponders. It weighs approximately 2,648 kilograms (5,838 lb) fully fueled and has a dry mass of 1,600 kilograms (3,500 lb). It is stationed at approximately 81°W. There is also a plan to relocate the satellite to a 96.2 West orbital position and operate there pursuant to Argentine ITU filings. It is powered by two deployable solar panels which charge the batteries. It uses LEROS-1C engines for propulsion.

Payloads: 1
Total Mass: 2,648.0 kg
Geostationary Transfer Orbit

Nahuel 1A

Nahuel 1A was a Spacebus 2000NG satellite manufactured by Dornier Satellitensysteme as the prime contractor with Aérospatiale of Cannes-Mandelieu supplying the bus. It was launched on January 30, 1997, by an Ariane 44L launcher along companion GE-2. The satellite was located in the 71.8 degrees West slot. It was operated by Nahuelsat S.A., the first satellite operator of Argentina from its ground station in Benavidez, province of Buenos Aires. It was transferred in 2006 to ARSAT S.A., along with all other Nahuelsat S.A. assets. Satellite mass was 1,790 kg (3,950 lb) wet, and 828 kg (1,825 lb) dry with a nominal lifetime of 12.33 years. It had eighteen 54 MHz transponders implemented with 55W TWTAs in three Ku band and extended Ku band coverages. Thus, it had 27 transponder equivalent or 972 MHz of Ku Band bandwidth.

It was successfully reorbited in June 2010, when most of the onboard propellant depleted, using the remaining propellant and blowdown helium still stored in the propellant tanks.

Payloads: 1
Total Mass: 1,790.0 kg
Geostationary Transfer Orbit


ELA-2, Guiana Space Centre, French Guiana, France



3rd orbital launch attempt


83rd mission
1st mission of 1997
78th successful mission
22nd consecutive successful mission

Ariane 4

64th mission
1st mission of 1997
61st successful mission
22nd consecutive successful mission