by Staff Writers
Kourou, French Guiana (ESA) Oct 31, 2011
The Flight Readiness Review (FFR) for the Vega launcher was held in Frascati, Italy on October 13 and 14. Based on this review, the Director-General of the European Space Agency (ESA) decided to start the Vega qualification launch campaign, with Arianespace's operating staff providing their support for this campaign.
The stages for the qualification launcher arrived in Kourou on October 24, and the launch campaign will start on November 7, 2011 with the transfer of the first stage to the launch pad. The first launch is scheduled for the end of January 2012.
ESA and Arianespace have ordered four new Vega launchers ESA, Arianespace and ELV, the launcher production prime, signed a contract in September for the production of four new Vega operational launchers.
The Vega launch vehicle programme has recently taken several major steps towards operation:
+ The decision has been made to start the qualification launch campaign;
+ ESA and Arianespace have ordered four new launchers;
+ Studies for the launch of the LISA Pathfinder mission have started.
This contract complements the purchase of a first launcher in an agreement signed last year within the framework of the Verta contract, covering the five launches that follow Vega's qualification flight.
Studies under way for the LISA Pathfinder mission
The mission is scheduled for a launch window from October 2013 to September 2014.
A third launcher on the equator Starting in 2012 the new Vega launch system will be operated by Arianespace at the Guiana Space Centre in French Guiana, alongside the other two launchers in this European family: the Ariane 5 heavy launcher and the Soyuz medium launcher. Vega has a payload capacity of 1,500 kg into polar orbit at an altitude of 700 km.
Designed to handle a wide range of missions and payload configurations, Vega is especially well suited to the launch of small satellites into low or sun-synchronous orbits, thus enabling Arianespace to meet customer demand. Vega should quickly establish itself as the benchmark launch vehicle in its class.
Vega is a European Space Agency (ESA) programme jointly funded by Italy, France, Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Sweden. ELV is owned by Avio, with 70%, and the Italian space agency ASI, with 30%.
Launch Pad at Space-Travel.com
Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.
NASA Langley Watches Ceres Launch Aboard NPP Satellite
Hampton, VA (SPX) Oct 28, 2011
NASA Langley's latest Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES), an instrument that has studied the Earth's climate for nearly 30 years, is scheduled to launch at 5:48 a.m. Friday, Oct. 28, aboard the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System Preparatory Project (NPP) satellite from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. CERES collects data about Earth ... read more
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2011 - Space Media Network. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|