Encyclopedia Astronautica
Vesta


French sounding rocket. In the late 1950's LRBA studied several possible configurations for a 'Super Veronique' sounding rocket, with engines of 80 to 250 kN to carry a payload of 100 kg up to 600 km altitude. In 1962 CNES ordered the Vesta configuration. Static tests in 1964 led to a modest series of launches in 1965-1969.

Payload: 500 kg (1,100 lb) to a 400 km altitude. Boost Propulsion: Nitric acid/turpentine.

Gross mass: 5,700 kg (12,500 lb).
Payload: 500 kg (1,100 lb).
Height: 10.20 m (33.40 ft).
Diameter: 1.00 m (3.20 ft).
Thrust: 140.00 kN (31,470 lbf).
Apogee: 400 km (240 mi).
First Launch: 1965.10.15.
Last Launch: 1969.11.08.
Number: 5 .

More... - Chronology...


Associated Countries
See also
  • Veronique After the cancellation of the 'Super V-2' project, the German team at Vernon pursued development of a tenth-scale version, the Project 4213 Veronique (VERnon et electrONIQUE). The 4 tonne thrust motor, using nitric acid and kerosene, beat the 'pure French' project 4211 Eole design and paved the way leading to the Ariane space booster. More...

Associated Manufacturers and Agencies
  • LRBA French manufacturer of rocket engines and rockets. LRBA, France. More...

Associated Launch Sites
  • Hammaguira The constellation of launch complexes and nuclear weapons test sites established by France in Algeria began with the Special Weapons Test Center (CIEES). This began operations at Colomb-Bechar, Algeria, on April 24, 1947. Development of the larger Veronique series required a new facility. This went into operation at Hammaguir, 120 km southwest of Colomb-Bechar, in May 1952. The evacuation of these launch sites was a condition of the final agreement signed in March 1962 that ended the Algerian Civil War. The sites continued in use until finally turned over to the Algerian government on 1 July 1967. French missile test activities moved to Biscarosse, in France, and orbital launches to Kourou, in French Guiana. Hammaguira was known to have been used for at least 271 launches from 1952 to 1967. More...
  • Kourou After the agreement with newly independent Algeria for France to evacuate their launch sites in that country, a location near Biscarosse was selected for French missile testing. However since only launches westwards across the Bay of Biscay could be made from this site, it was unsuitable for France's Diamant orbital launch vehicle. After reviewing 14 potential sites, a location in the South American French colony of Guiana was selected. This would allow over-water launches to a tremendous range of possible orbital inclinations -- from -100.5 deg to 1.5 deg. Being near the equator, it would provide the maximum assist from the earth's rotation for launches into equatorial orbits. The decision was formalized in April 1964 and in July 1966 ELDO chose the site for future launches of the Europa II launch vehicle. More...
  • Kourou ALFS Veronique, Stromboli, Skua, Cajun, Belier, Arcas launch complex. Aire de Lancement Fusee-Sondes More...

Associated Stages
  • Vesta-1 Nitric acid/Turpentine rocket stage. 140.00 kN (31,473 lbf) thrust. Mass 5,000 kg (11,023 lb). More...

Vesta Chronology


1965 October 15 - . Launch Site: Hammaguira. Launch Complex: Hammaguira Blandine. LV Family: Veronique. Launch Vehicle: Vesta. LV Configuration: Vesta 001.
  • FU-123 test - . Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Apogee: 150 km (90 mi).

1965 October 25 - . Launch Site: Hammaguira. Launch Complex: Hammaguira Blandine. LV Family: Veronique. Launch Vehicle: Vesta. LV Configuration: Vesta 002.
  • FU-123 test - . Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Apogee: 105 km (65 mi).

1967 March 7 - . 09:42 GMT - . Launch Site: Hammaguira. Launch Complex: Hammaguira Blandine. LV Family: Veronique. Launch Vehicle: Vesta. LV Configuration: Vesta 004.
  • FU-147 Biological mission - . Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Apogee: 243 km (150 mi).

1967 March 13 - . 09:30 GMT - . Launch Site: Hammaguira. Launch Complex: Hammaguira Blandine. LV Family: Veronique. Launch Vehicle: Vesta. LV Configuration: Vesta 005.
  • FU-147 Biological (Macaca) Biological mission - . Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Apogee: 234 km (145 mi).

1969 November 8 - . Launch Site: Kourou. Launch Complex: Kourou ALFS. LV Family: Veronique. Launch Vehicle: Vesta. LV Configuration: Vesta 006.
  • FU-189 Star pt test - . Nation: France. Agency: CNES. Apogee: 204 km (126 mi).

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