The European space company ArianeGroup will develop a reusable launch vehicle to compete with the American SpaceX, among other things.
This was announced by French Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire this week.
The spacecraft should be operational in 2026, Le Maire said during a visit to the ArianeGroup site in Vernon, in the French department of Eure. There the engines of the large Ariane missiles are tested.
According to Le Maire, Europe initially did not believe in reusable rocket stages. “We have been delayed with our US partners who have developed SpaceX and Falcon 9.
We have to catch up,” he said of the new French space strategy. That strategy includes the ambition to develop a kind of mini-launch vehicle that is also reusable.