The VERTA (Vega Research and Technology Accompaniment) programme aims to demonstrate the flexibility of the Vega launch system. It comprises three main elements:
- Procurement of five VERTA demonstration flights;
- Customer service improvements;
- Production accompaniment and technological activities.
The VERTA flights will carry four ESA missions: Proba-V, Aeolus, LISA Pathfinder and the Intermediate Experimental Vehicle (IXV).
The first VERTA flight took place on 7 May 2013 following the launcher’s qualification flight on 13 February 2012.
The main customer service improvement activity includes the development of the multiple-payload launch capability for Vega.
At a planned minimum rate of two launches per year, the programme will allow the smooth introduction of Vega for commercial exploitation.
Vega’s first commercial launch contracts were signed on 14 December 2011 for the Sentinel-2 and Sentinel-3 satellites, which are now scheduled for launches in 2014–16.
Last update: 20 November 2013