Why was it important for Europe to successfully launch the Vega-C rocket, the younger sister of Aryan 6?

Play your own role in strategic, violent and profitable races for satellite launchers. This is the challenge that represents Europe’s first successful flight this Wednesday from the “small” Vega-C rocket from Kauro. After two erroneous calculations, the 35-meter-high instrument soared into the Guyanese sky, ushering in the reign of a new generation of launchers. European Space Agency (ESA).

“This is the final outcome of the decision taken by the European Space Agency in December 2014,” recalled Jean-Marc Astrog, CNS’s director of strategy. Three more Ariane 5, Vega and Soyuz launchers have been replaced by two more competitive launchers in the global market: Ariane 6 and Vega-C ”. To scan all spectra from new satellites, institutional or commercial, small or large, single or cluster.

Although the first flight of the Ariane 6 heavy launcher has been postponed to 2023, the range of light launchers has therefore been successfully modernized. Because Vega-C – the “C” for integration – is a doped version of its predecessor, created by the same Italian industrialist Avio. It is capable of placing a total mass in orbit of 2.2 tons less than 1.5 tons for Vega, launched 20 times since 2012 with two failures.

17,000 satellites will be launched in 10 years

And this new ship from the European Navy is timely, while the American SpaceX program is performing in the niche and demand is exploding. “The number of our small satellites has increased significantly. So it’s nice to have a well-adapted launcher, “said Jean-Marc Asterg.

According to specialized company EuroconSalt, more than 17,000 satellites will have to be launched by 2031, 4.5 times more than in the last decade. And among them, a large majority will actually be small satellites sent into low orbit, as Vega-C now knows how to do. With its enhanced performance, He According to Avio in an interview with AFP, Vega could solve 90% of the market for low-orbit satellites at altitudes of several hundred kilometers as opposed to half.

Eventually, Vega-C will leave less space debris in its wake. The fourth stage of this can be revived and allows the satellites to be positioned in different orbits before they are orbited.

Sister is now a neighbor

In addition, this Wednesday, it’s a small piece of Ariane 6 which took off. The “P120C”, the first stage of the rocket, is a common module with the Ariane 6, which will act as a booster booster. An adjustment of good quality for the economy of the two programs. And, as evidenced by the relationship between the fate of the big rocket and its younger sister, the central part of an Ariane 6 was first placed vertically on the July 2 Kauro launch pad. The assembly of the new generation of large rockets will continue there, combined with the whole battery test.

And don’t tell Europeans that they are behind Elon Musk. Moreover, the strategy is not the same. The Aryan 6 and Vega-C Space X do not include reusable modules like the famous Falcon 9 rocket. The launcher is available, it is reliable and the cost is attractive. Recycling, it’s not too much interest for him, it could even represent a certain number of limitations, ”explained Cnes’ director of strategy. The rocket that comes back, the Europeans are working on it, “with new engines and new protesters”. But it will be more for the next generation. After Ariane 6 and Vega-C. And in the meantime, the small rocket can still land the Space Rider, a small orbital module capable of returning from its mission.

Leave a Comment