The European Space Agency (ESA) is Europe’s gateway to space – its mission is to shape the development of the continent’s space capability and ensure that space investment continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.
Ariane 6 is the ESA’s latest and most technologically advanced rocket system. ETC has signed a long-term contract with ArianeGroup to manufacture and supply carbon fibre pressure vessels for use onboard these new rockets.
The supply contract covers the design, development and manufacturing of three Type IV carbon fibre helium tanks, to be integrated in each Ariane 6 launch system, for both the lower and upper stages of the rocket. These tanks will form an essential part of the rocket’s command systems.
“This is a remarkable moment in our company’s history; working with the European Space Agency Programme is one of the most challenging technological tasks you can imagine,” says Reinhard Hinterreither, ETC’s CEO. “Our team of specialists have worked hard to secure this contract. We are proud to be one of the partners working on this state-of-the-art technology and making an impact on the aerospace industry for years to come.”
About the Ariane 6
- Ariane 6 will be available in two versions depending on the required performance: Ariane 62 (two strap-on boosters) and Ariane 64 (four strap-on boosters)
- At over 60 metres tall, the rocket will weigh nearly 900 tonnes when launched with a full payload
- For the development of the rocket, ESA is working with an industrial network of more than 600 companies in 13 European countries
- The rocket is planned to launch from facilities at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana
Specifications of the Ariane 6 pressure vessels
- 790mm (D) x 1226mm (L)
- Nominal capacity: 374L
- Maximum expected operating pressure (MEOP): 400 bar
- Maximum gas temperature from -90 °C to 85 °C
- Applicable gas: helium