VEGA C

Multiple launch capability and cost-efficient launch services
OVERVIEW

Vega C –an upgraded and more powerful version of the current Vega launch vehicle– is a European Space Agency (ESA) program that will further solidify Arianespace’s market position for small satellite launches to low Earth orbit (LEO).

As a flexible launch system, Vega C can be adapted for a broad range of missions –from nanosatellites to larger optical and radar observation spacecraft. Payload adapters will facilitate Vega C’s deployment of multiple satellite passengers, including configurations with primary payloads that are accompanied by CubeSats or microsats.

VEGA C: INSIDE THE FAIRING

Your mission, your Vega C

Single launch
Dual Launch
Piggyback Launch
Rideshare Launch
Constellation
1/5

Single launch

This launch configuration involves only one spacecraft aboard Vega C, using an off-the-shelf adapter.

This versatile and cost-effective launcher is equipped with a larger fairing that has an increased payload envelope to accommodate larger satellites. It will be suitable for Earth observation satellites up to 2,300 kg. The payload capacity to Sun-synchronous Earth orbit at 700 km will increase from about 1,500 kg with the current Vega configuration to 2,300 kg on Vega C.

Arianespace provides the best possible solution for small and medium spacecraft needing a wide range of orbits (Sun- synchronous, ballistic, transfer to the Lagrange point L1, etc.), for Earth observation, science, education, defense and other applications.

2/5

Dual Launch

This launch configuration has one upper spacecraft and one lower spacecraft on Vega C, using the VESPA C dual launch structure.

The “VESPA C” dual launch structure is a “VESPA”-type structure with larger dimensions in order to take advantage of the larger volume available inside the Vega C fairing.

This improved lift capability, along with increased volume under the payload fairing, will respond to the evolving launch needs of commercial and institutional users.

3/5

Piggyback Launch

The “piggyback launch” features one or more larger main spacecraft and several mini or micro satellites aboard Vega C, using a multiple launch structure.  This will allow for the separation and release of even more small spacecraft at the same time. This service is particularly beneficial for entities that would otherwise be priced out of the launch market.

The piggyback missions on Vega C leverage the extra performance and volume that are available on an already manifested mission with Main Passenger(s). The launch period and the main characteristics of the mission are defined by the Main Passenger(s).

4/5

Rideshare Launch

The Vega’s now-proven Small Spacecraft Mission Service (SSMS) launch structure has established new rideshare opportunities for potentially dozens of micro and small satellites on a single flight.

In order to address the needs of a growing number of small sat projects, Arianespace is now offering a tailored, standardized launch service, with regular rideshare missions on Vega C, in addition to some piggyback opportunities. With its modularity, the Vega can be configured for a multitude of passengers.

The rideshare missions on Vega C take place regularly, at least one per year. During each of these missions Arianespace will work closely with every customer to guarantee an optimal experience.

5/5

Constellation

Vega C’s flexibility is well adapted for a broad range of missions and offers customers the ability to deploy a small constellation through the use of a dedicated multiple launch structure.

Vega C

STANDARD MISSION PROFILE

A standard Vega C mission profile starts with the liftoff and the vertical ascent phase of the P120C, the first stage solid booster. The ascent and separation of the Zefiro 40 (Z40) follows, with a subsequent ignition of the Zefiro 9  (Z9) stage. The fairing is also released at the beginning of the Z9 ignition. The AVUM+  first phase typically entails two burns to reach a targeted orbit: a first AVUM+ burn to reach an intermediate orbit, followed by a coast phase whose duration depends on the targeted orbit, and finally a second AVUM+ burn to reach the final orbit.

After spacecraft separation and following the time delay needed to provide a safe distance between the AVUM+ upper stage and the spacecraft, AVUM+ begins maneuvers in order to release other spacecraft into operational orbits or to initiate a controlled re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere.

Discover the mission

Vega C

STANDARD MISSION PROFILE

A standard Vega C mission profile starts with the liftoff and the vertical ascent phase of the P120C, the first stage solid booster. The ascent and separation of the Zefiro 40 (Z40) follows, with a subsequent ignition of the Zefiro 9  (Z9) stage. The fairing is also released at the beginning of the Z9 ignition. The AVUM+  first phase typically entails two burns to reach a targeted orbit: a first AVUM+ burn to reach an intermediate orbit, followed by a coast phase whose duration depends on the targeted orbit, and finally a second AVUM+ burn to reach the final orbit.

After spacecraft separation and following the time delay needed to provide a safe distance between the AVUM+ upper stage and the spacecraft, AVUM+ begins maneuvers in order to release other spacecraft into operational orbits or to initiate a controlled re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere.

VIDEO

Vega C

INDUSTRIAL TEAM

AVIO S.p.A, based in Colleferro, Italy, manages the Vega development and production. Its business relies on the experience gained by the shareholders in the field of the solid propulsion as suppliers of the Ariane 3, Ariane 4 and Ariane 5 boosters.

AVIO, as industrial prime contractor, is in charge of acceptance of the launcher’s components and integration in French Guiana. As the launcher design authority, it will also participate in final preparations and launch operations AVIO establishes close working relations with well-known European suppliers and partners.

Italy
Avio EUROPROPULSION CIRA
France
AIRBUS DEFENSE & SPACE ARIANEGROUP
Belgium
SABCA
Switzerland
RUAG SPACE
Sweden
RUAG SPACE
Netherlands
DUTCH SPACE
Ireland
Test

VEGA C

Flexibility and performance

Vega C has been upgraded with a new solid-fuel engine, improved second stage and a larger fairing to significantly increase payload mass and volume capabilities. This will allow it to serve the booming Earth observation market, as well as long-term institutional needs.

It can carry heavier and larger payloads such as one radar satellite or many nanosats thanks to its SSMS (Small Spacecraft Mission Service).

Dynamic, flexible, efficient
  • Increased performance
  • Optimized for light-lift market
  • Larger volume under the fairing
  • Rideshare ready
  • Competitive costs
Industrial prime contractor

Avio

TECHNICAL DATA
  • Height: 35 meters
  • Diameter: 3.4 meters
  • Mass: 210 tons
  • Thrust at lift-off: 180 tons
2.2 tons into
Sun-Synchronous orbit
3,3 tons into
Low Earth orbit
2.3 tons into
Polar orbit

LAUNCH SITE

THE SPACEPORT

Vega and Vega C’s launch site is based on the Spaceport’s complex, which originally was used for missions of the Ariane 1 and Ariane 3 vehicles.

The Vega launch site is a dedicated area designed for launch vehicle integration and final preparation, the upper composite integration with launch vehicle and the final launch activities. It is located approximately 15 km northwest of the CSG Technical Center.

Discover the Vega C launch site
2021

With its first flight planned for 2021, Vega C offers customers enhanced payload performance at a competitive price.

Tune in on arianespace.com close