Vega: ESA’s new small launcher


Building Costs are being kept to a minimum by using advanced low-cost technologies and existing production facilities used for Ariane launchers, making access to space easier, quicker and cheaper.

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  1. This small rocket is only able to lift 1.5 tons to low earth orbit. First flight should be 2010.

    No manned flight is possible. Even the number of payload will be quiet limited for that rocket.

    If this rocket is necessary is questionable, because the USA and Russia are using their old intercontinental rocket as base for cheap and reliable launches of the same magnitude. So they can always be cheaper.

  2. @bb4aa
    Not necessarily. ICBMs used for this purpose are usually old, liquid-fuelled and their reliability is questionable.

    This rocket is meant to be small, cheap, reliable and most of all, European. With Vega, ESA will have launchers for every purpose and every payload.

    Plus, there is a possibility that the technologies used in Vega will eventually be used in Ariane-5's solid rocket boosters, making them lighter (due to the use of composites instead of steel) and thus more effective.

  3. @hkostal Another dumb-ed down rocket that uses Estes solid rocket engines (like SLS, AresI, Shuttle, and Ariane). I am glad we still have real rocket scientists somewhere that make liquid fueled rockets with real rocket engines (Falcon9, Soyuz, some Atlas, some Delta). We will never have advances with solid rocket fuel, its like lighting a match and it burns. At least with liquid fuel one can make engine improvements, thrust to weight improvements, try new types of propellant, etc..

  4. Italy spend 65% for this 710 Millions Euros project since it's originally an Italian space agency project. ISA then enter in partnership and didn't sell it as you say, with ESA. And together build it.
    France spend 13% of the budget and is the second biggest contributor.
    Vega's capacity load is 1,5 t , Arianne 5 can load 6,2 t . So not the same loads as you say.
    ESA ( France is the first contributor ) spend an other 400 Million Euros to develop the project in the future.

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