News ESA's Future: The News and Updates Thread

Urwumpe

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Since we have one for NASA, nothing for ESA, I started once here.

Currently the Ministerial Council press conference is running, with some great news so far, despite the hard start of the council.

Ariane 5 will be improved with the "Ariane 5 Midlife Evolution" AND Ariane 6 will be build. Ariane 6 is planned to launch from 2021-2022 on. But the future launcher program of ESA will still have its budget cut.

The ISS will be supported by ESA even after 2017.

The ATV will see an evolution and the cooperation with NASA regarding the Orion-ATV Frankenstein has the approval of ESA. With the Ariane compromise, France also agreed to pay 20% of the "barter element" for the Orion program.

This is especially because of the UK, which will pay 20 million Euro for the project as go-ahead funding. (This is also expected to raise the chances of Tim Peake to get his seat into space, since he is currently the only new ESA astronaut without a mission).

The funding for CSG will be guaranteed until 2017 already.

http://www.esa.int/esaCP/

http://www.spiegel.de/wissenschaft/...treit-iss-beteiligung-gesichert-a-868429.html
 

Galactic Penguin SST

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I hope that France and Italy can stop pushing the solid-solid-hydrogen Ariane 6 concept - it's ugly, can't scale up or down without making large changes to the design, and most importantly I think it will end up more expensive than the Ariane 5 with single satellite launches! :facepalm: Please, either make a scaled down A5 (shorter and narrower core stage, upper stage with Vinci, small solids on the sides) or build a stage combustion hydrogen core stage engine for a "common core booster"...

 
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RGClark

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I hope that France and Italy can stop pushing the solid-solid-hydrogen Ariane 6 concept - it's ugly, can't scale up or down without making large changes to the design, and most importantly I think it will end up more expensive than the Ariane 5 with single satellite launches! :facepalm: Please, either make a scaled down A5 (shorter and narrower core stage, upper stage with Vinci, small solids on the sides) or build a stage combustion hydrogen core stage engine for a "common core booster"...
With this decision the ESA has guaranteed Elon Musk’s prediction will be right:

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk: Europe’s rocket ‘has no chance’.
By Jonathan Amos
Science correspondent, BBC News
19 November 2012 Last updated at 10:47
http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-20389148

He meant there the Ariane 5 could not compete with the Falcon 9. They would have to move to the Ariane 6 to produce a cost competitive rocket. The Ariane 5 ME is likely to be even more expensive so won’t help in that regard.
But the ESA already has the means to produce a cost competitive rocket, but a false costing model prevents them from seeing it. They have the idea that a stage is only cost effective when using a single engine. So their plan for an Ariane 6 was to make a stage at about the size of the Ariane 5 core but using an engine twice as powerful as the Vulcain, saving costs by dispensing with the two large strap-on boosters.
The problem is this would have been a multi-billion dollar development project for the new engine; thus explaining their inability to pull the trigger on its development. But the point of the matter is SpaceX has shown this cost model is fallacious. A stage can be cost effective using multiple copies of a smaller lower cost engine.
By just using two Vulcains on the Ariane 5 core they would get a launcher of comparable cost to the Falcon 9. But an even more important result of this is that it would also without the side boosters give Europe an independent manned spaceflight capability.

Bob Clark
 

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