Space underwriters are expecting to pay out at least US$400Million after Arianespace launch failure destroys military satellite

The claim will be one of the largest losses to hit the niche space launch insurance market since the US$400Million claim that arose from the failure of the Intelsat-27 satellite and its launcher in 2013.

The total loss of the Vega launch vehicle and its payload is likely to cost in the region of US$400 – $415Million.  The launch which took place on 10 July, involved a European-made Vega launch vehicle carrying the Airbus-built FalconEye1 military surveillance satellite for the United Arab Emirates government – the accident happened shortly after the un-manned rocket took-off from the Guiana Space Center in South America.

The launch policy for operator Arianespace is understood to have been placed with Atrium Syndicate 609 leading a Lloyd’s of London consortium for space risks called the Atrium Space Insurance Consortium (ASIC) together with other major space (re)insurers including Munich Re, Swiss Re, Axa XL, Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty subsidiary SpaceCo, CV Starr and Scor.