Author Topic: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates  (Read 117088 times)

Offline bolun

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ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« on: 01/24/2012 01:09 pm »
To maintain the competitiveness of Ariane 5 in the commercial market, ESA is preparing a more powerful and versatile version: Ariane 5 ME (Mid-life Evolution). This vehicle will respond to the need for heavier payloads and reignition capabilities for complex missions, such as planetary exploration.

This modernised version will replace both Ariane 5 ECA and Ariane 5 ES within this decade.

Ariane 5 ME missions
 
A number of new versatile cryogenic upper stage concepts have been assessed. The improved key performance and capability comes from the use of a new engine, Vinci, with a thrust of 18.3 t. It uses advanced technologies, such as an expander cycle and a deployable nozzle.

This evolution will allow Ariane 5 ME to handle a wider range of missions:

- Upper stage reignition allows to inject satellites in a higher orbit (GTO+: Supersynchronous orbit), which reduces the payload's propulsion needs to reach the target orbit and maximises the launcher's performance.

- Versatility opens the door to a wide range of combinations and pairing of different types of institutional missions, such as Earth-escape, GTO-escape, GEO and Moon or Mars missions, with improved precision and performance.

- The guaranteed deorbiting and/or injection into graveyard orbits will keep the space environment free of debris.

http://www.esa.int/SPECIALS/Launchers_Access_to_Space/SEM9G9RHPOG_0.html

Offline bolun

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #1 on: 01/24/2012 01:13 pm »
Ariane 5 Upgrade Could End Subsidies

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/story_generic.jsp?channel=aerospacedaily&id=news/asd/2012/01/23/02.xml&headline=Ariane%205%20Upgrade%20Could%20End%20Subsidies

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European Space Agency subsidies intended to offset high fixed costs incurred by the Arianespace commercial launch consortium could be unnecessary by decade’s end if ESA members agree to invest a little over €1 billion ($1.3 billion) to upgrade the Ariane 5 rocket, according to Astrium Chief Executive Francois Auque.

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France is pressing for development of a successor rocket, having already anted-up close to €250 million in public bond money for early definition and design studies of a next-generation launch vehicle (NGL).

“We could do both the Ariane 5 ME and the [NGL],” says Yannick d’Escatha, head of the French space agency CNES. “But we would have to spend twice the money.”

Offline bolun

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« Last Edit: 01/24/2012 01:55 pm by bolun »

Offline bolun

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #3 on: 02/09/2012 07:25 pm »
http://www.spacenews.com/policy/120209-france-germany-resolve-ariane5-differences.html

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France and Germany have agreed to establish two working groups to resolve their differences over the future of the Ariane 5 rocket and Europe’s role in the international space station.

Both groups are scheduled to reach their conclusions by June 30, in time to inform French and German positions before a November conference of ministers from the 19-nation European Space Agency (ESA). The conference, held every three or four years, sets Europe’s medium-term space budget and policy direction.


Offline sdsds

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #4 on: 02/09/2012 07:55 pm »
Are the solid rocket boosters for Ariane 5 ME unchanged from Ariane 5 ECA and ES?  (And ... are these the largest solid rocket motors used by any currently-flying launch system?)
« Last Edit: 02/09/2012 07:55 pm by sdsds »
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Offline baldusi

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #5 on: 02/09/2012 08:30 pm »
Are the solid rocket boosters for Ariane 5 ME unchanged from Ariane 5 ECA and ES?  (And ... are these the largest solid rocket motors used by any currently-flying launch system?)
If I'm not mistaken, those aren't changed. Supposedly they could apply some of the Vega's P80 technology. But it could require some structural changes. And it would be expensive. Remember that the P80 is 10m long x 3m wide composite core of 3MN of thrust, while the P241 are steel 31m long x 3m wide segmented solids with 7MN of thrust. So, I don't know if they can apply the composite experience and tooling to the segmented version.
The ME upper stage, instead, not only gives much better GTO capability, but enables direct GSO insertion, since it supports multiple starts. And it gives just enough performance to make dual manifesting easier.
In this constrained budget times, they are trying to make the bare minimum investment that will enable them to go to black, thus only the upper stage. There where studies for a Vulcain 3, besides the aforementioned P80 technology. And I think some other parts to improve.
But the Ariane 5 is just too big for the market, and pretty inflexible. So they are trying to go the the Ariane 6 to do away with the Soyuz and Ariane 5. And that's the whole current discussion.

Offline sdsds

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #6 on: 02/10/2012 02:23 am »
Thanks for that confirmation.  (Love those solids!  :))

The ME upper stage, instead, not only gives much better GTO capability, but enables direct GSO insertion, since it supports multiple starts. And it gives just enough performance to make dual manifesting easier.

And also enables potential missions beyond Earth orbit, yes?  IIUC, the launch windows become too constraining unless the upper stage can first complete the ascent to LEO, and then restart at the right moment for the interplanetary departure...?
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Offline baldusi

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #7 on: 02/27/2012 01:08 am »
I've found this comment on Nicolas PILLET site Ariane 5 article, that on the 62nd International Astronautical Congress, Yuzhnoye proposed a Zenit based LRB for the Ariane 5 ECA. They proposed an RP-1 engine, the RD-810 (1,815kN thrust), that would have an isp of 335s in vacuum. Using four of those engines per booster they would have similar performance to the RD-171M. This would give 14tn to GTO for ECA. I guess an ECB with that boosters would have something like 18tn to GTO. I wonder how serious was this proposal.

Offline simpl simon

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #8 on: 02/27/2012 02:22 am »
I've found this comment on Nicolas PILLET site Ariane 5 article, that on the 62nd International Astronautical Congress, Yuzhnoye proposed a Zenit based LRB for the Ariane 5 ECA. They proposed an RP-1 engine, the RD-810 (1,815kN thrust), that would have an isp of 335s in vacuum. Using four of those engines per booster they would have similar performance to the RD-171M. This would give 14tn to GTO for ECA. I guess an ECB with that boosters would have something like 18tn to GTO. I wonder how serious was this proposal.
The proposal might have been completely serious, but dead on arrival, IMO.  Ariane 5 embodies the strategic desire of Europe (well, France and Germany) to demonstrate its capability of autonomous access to space. That capability would be somewhat less than autonomous with Russian boosters attached, even if they brought a competitive advantage with them, which I doubt.
 

Offline baldusi

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #9 on: 02/27/2012 02:38 am »
Ukranian, not Russian. They are in a strange place. They aren't ESA, but Russia is trying to get rid of them, at the same time it's politically trying to keep them within their sphere of influence. And their current leaderships it's not helping them getting into EU.
Yuzhnoye designed the Vega's AVUM. But now ESA is trying to replace it. But if they could get the RD-810 developed they could have the Zenit-2 all for themselves, but nowere to launch it from. At the same time they are selling the tanks to Orbital's Antares. And they have the Cyclon-4 with Brazil (which is not aligned with anybody).
It seems to me that they are sort of trying to be partners with everybody and at the same time all their partners are trying to replace them for local sources. So they have Russian partners, ESA partners, USA partners and Brazilian partners. They have to keep getting new partnerships before they are replaced.

Offline woods170

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #10 on: 02/27/2012 09:58 am »
Yuzhnoye designed the Vega's AVUM. But now ESA is trying to replace it.

Yuzhnoye supplies the engine and associated tanks and plumbing for AVUM. The AVUM stage was designed in Europe however. Structures and RCS are supplied by EADS Astrium. ESA is not trying to replace AVUM. The German aerospace agency DLR has come with the idea to replace the Yuzhnoye-supplied engine (and tanks and plumbing) with a European engine: project VENUS: VEga New Upper Stage.

Offline Nicolas PILLET

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #11 on: 02/27/2012 11:52 am »
Ariane 5 embodies the strategic desire of Europe (well, France and Germany) to demonstrate its capability of autonomous access to space.

In this case ; France and Italy. They are the main developpers of EAPs, so it would be a great loss for them (for us  :)) to replace EAP by an Ukrainian-built booster.

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Offline arkaska

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #12 on: 02/27/2012 12:00 pm »
Most of it has not to do with a reluctance to use Russian/Ukrainian equipment but rather politics within ESA. Currently at least 90% of what a country invest in an ESA project should be returned through industrial contracts. That is hard to achieve if ESA starts buying for example boosters from Ukraine.

Offline baldusi

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #13 on: 02/27/2012 02:07 pm »
[...]The German aerospace agency DLR has come with the idea to replace the Yuzhnoye-supplied engine (and tanks and plumbing) with a European engine: project VENUS: VEga New Upper Stage.
I thought the improvement was the Lyra program and the idea was to increase the size of the first and second stages (to 100tonnes and 28tonnes) and have just a Lox/light HC third stage. Or this are separate programs?

Offline woods170

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #14 on: 02/28/2012 10:08 am »
[...]The German aerospace agency DLR has come with the idea to replace the Yuzhnoye-supplied engine (and tanks and plumbing) with a European engine: project VENUS: VEga New Upper Stage.
I thought the improvement was the Lyra program and the idea was to increase the size of the first and second stages (to 100tonnes and 28tonnes) and have just a Lox/light HC third stage. Or this are separate programs?
This is moving off-topic as this is the Ariane 5-ME thread. I've posted my reply in the Vega updates thread: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=1071.msg867540#msg867540
« Last Edit: 02/28/2012 10:37 am by woods170 »

Offline bolun

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #15 on: 04/07/2012 10:26 am »
http://www.spacenews.com/launch/120406-esa-nasa-test-ariane-upgrade.html

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ESA Expresses Interest in NASA Facility To Test Ariane 5 Upgrade

The European Space Agency (ESA) is considering paying a multimillion-dollar repair bill for NASA’s B-2 Spacecraft Propulsion Research Facility in Sandusky, Ohio, so that the upper stage for the possible successor to Europe’s Ariane 5 rocket can be tested there.

The B-2 Spacecraft Propulsion Research Facility is part of Plum Brook Station, a campus about 80 kilometers west of NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland. ESA wants to use the facility to test the upper stage for its Ariane 5 Midlife Evolution (ME) rocket, one of two options Europe is considering for its next satellite launcher. However, the B-2 building needs to have its steam ejection system fixed so it can simulate high-altitude conditions needed for the ESA test.

Offline mmeijeri

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #16 on: 04/07/2012 10:29 am »
Huh? I thought upper stage tests for Vinci had been underway for some time in Lampoldshausen. I read some papers about the design of their own steam ejector system.
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Offline bolun

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #17 on: 04/10/2012 04:58 pm »
http://www.spacenews.com/launch/120410-astrium-contract-ariane5.html

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Astrium Awarded Contract for Continued Ariane 5 ME Development

Astrium Space Transportation will pursue development of an upgraded Ariane 5 launch vehicle under a contract with the European Space Agency (ESA) valued at 112 million euros ($150 million), Astrium announced April 10.

The contract covers work on the Ariane 5 Midlife Evolution, or Ariane 5 ME, program that ESA governments partially approved in late 2008.

Offline DT1

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #18 on: 04/12/2012 10:52 am »
Huh? I thought upper stage tests for Vinci had been underway for some time in Lampoldshausen. I read some papers about the design of their own steam ejector system.

These are tests on engine level w/o stage (see http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=9314.0;all for some info about the steam generators).
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Offline woods170

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Re: ESA - Ariane 5 ME updates
« Reply #19 on: 04/12/2012 12:35 pm »
Huh? I thought upper stage tests for Vinci had been underway for some time in Lampoldshausen. I read some papers about the design of their own steam ejector system.

These are tests on engine level w/o stage (see http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=9314.0;all for some info about the steam generators).
Correct. The interest of ESA for the B-2 facility at Plum Brook is for testfiring the whole ECB stage under high-altitude conditions, not just the Vinci engine.

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