Europe launches maiden flight of Ariane 6 rocket

by | Jul 9, 2024 | Science

Running years behind schedule, Europe’s new Ariane 6 rocket blasted off on its maiden flight Tuesday, thundering away from the European Space Agency’s jungle launch site in French Guiana in a bid to restore independent European access to space.Facing increasingly stiff international competition, Europe’s space agencies see the Ariane 6 as critical to re-establishing and maintaining their foothold in low-Earth orbit and beyond, launching European military satellites, science missions, navigation and communications satellites and other commercial payloads. Liftoff! A powerful new Ariane 6 rocket blasts off on its long-awaited maiden flight, ending a European launch drought and restoring access to space for the European Space Agency’s 13 member states. / Credit: ESA webcastAfter the rocket’s seemingly flawless climb to space, ending a yearlong hiatus in heavy-lift European launches, mission managers were ecstatic.”Today, Ariane is back!” said Martin Sion, CEO of ArianeGroup, the rocket’s prime contractor. “With this this new launcher, Europe is restoring its autonomous access to space, and we all know how important this is to all of us.”I’d like to congratulate all of you, to thank all of you,” he told flight controllers, engineers and managers in the launch control room. “I’m proud of your talent and your dedication. Now, we have to ramp up production to serve our customers. It is already ongoing, and it starts (with) our next launch before year end.”He made those comments before a problem late in the mission prevented a third upper stage engine firing intended to drive the stage back into the atmosphere as planned. That, in turn, prevented the deployment of two small re-entry capsules designed to test innovative heat-shield technologies.It wasn’t immediat …

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[mwai_chat context=”Let’s have a discussion about this article:nnRunning years behind schedule, Europe’s new Ariane 6 rocket blasted off on its maiden flight Tuesday, thundering away from the European Space Agency’s jungle launch site in French Guiana in a bid to restore independent European access to space.Facing increasingly stiff international competition, Europe’s space agencies see the Ariane 6 as critical to re-establishing and maintaining their foothold in low-Earth orbit and beyond, launching European military satellites, science missions, navigation and communications satellites and other commercial payloads. Liftoff! A powerful new Ariane 6 rocket blasts off on its long-awaited maiden flight, ending a European launch drought and restoring access to space for the European Space Agency’s 13 member states. / Credit: ESA webcastAfter the rocket’s seemingly flawless climb to space, ending a yearlong hiatus in heavy-lift European launches, mission managers were ecstatic.”Today, Ariane is back!” said Martin Sion, CEO of ArianeGroup, the rocket’s prime contractor. “With this this new launcher, Europe is restoring its autonomous access to space, and we all know how important this is to all of us.”I’d like to congratulate all of you, to thank all of you,” he told flight controllers, engineers and managers in the launch control room. “I’m proud of your talent and your dedication. Now, we have to ramp up production to serve our customers. It is already ongoing, and it starts (with) our next launch before year end.”He made those comments before a problem late in the mission prevented a third upper stage engine firing intended to drive the stage back into the atmosphere as planned. That, in turn, prevented the deployment of two small re-entry capsules designed to test innovative heat-shield technologies.It wasn’t immediat …nnDiscussion:nn” ai_name=”RocketNews AI: ” start_sentence=”Can I tell you more about this article?” text_input_placeholder=”Type ‘Yes'”]
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