ESA Bulletin 123 (August 2005)

The Future Launchers Preparatory Programme (FLPP) was approved by the last ESA Ministerial Council and began in February 2004, ending a long period without a programme dedicated to future launchers at the European level. The aim is to prepare the Next Generation Launcher to be operational around 2020. System studies and technology activities therefore need to be conducted, including ground and in-flight tests, to foster new technologies capable of providing high performance and reliability, together with low life-cycle costs. The final choice between an expendable or reeusable type of launch vehicle will be made on the basis of proven technological readiness and consolidated cost and risk assessments.
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