TDF-2 & DFS-2

Launch Time
Tue Jul 24, 1990 22:25 UTC

Flight V37.


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


A 1980 French-German agreement to develop compatible direct broadcast satellite systems led to the creation of the French TDF (Télédiffusion de France) series of satellites which were launched in 1988 and 1990. The technical specifications of TDF are also virtually identical with those of TV-Sat, and both satellites share the same geostationary locale near 19 degrees W

Based on Aerospatiale's Spacebus-300 platform, TDF spacecraft are about 1.3 metric tons on station with bus dimensions of 1.6 m by 2.4 m by 7.1 m and a payload mass of 250 kg. The solar arrays span 19.3 m and provide 4.3 kW at start of life. Both spacecraft carry five, high power (230 W) 18/12 GHz transponders and are located at 19 degrees W.

Payloads: 1
Total Mass: 2,054.0 kg
Geostationary Transfer Orbit


The DFS series of satellites debuted in 1989 with the third being launched in 1992. Ordered in 1983 and produced by the GESAT consortium of MBB (flight segment prime contractor), Siemens (overall prime contractor), ANT Nachrichtentechnik (payload), Standard Elektrik Lorenz (digital switching equipment), and Dornier Systems (ground control system), DFS spacecraft are smaller than TV-Sat: on-station mass of DFS is 850 kg with a 15.4 m solar array span providing up to 1.5 kW of electrical power.

The communications payload includes ten 14/11-12 GHz transponders with five spares and one experimental 30/20 GHz transponder with one spare. At the end of 1994 DFS 1-3 were stationed at 33.5 degrees E, 28.5 degrees E, and 23.5 degrees E, respectively. Like TV-Sat, the DFS Kopernikus series has been concluded.

Payloads: 2
Total Mass: 1,419.0 kg
Geostationary Transfer Orbit


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



66th orbital launch attempt


28th mission
3rd mission of 1990
25th successful mission
1st consecutive successful mission

Ariane 4

9th mission
3rd mission of 1990
8th successful mission
1st consecutive successful mission