Paris: The European Space Agency (ESA) expressed concern on Monday over the state of its carrier rockets, following a failed Vega-C rocket launch in December.
ESA head Josef Aschbacher said on Monday he expected a report from a commission of inquiry into the failure by the middle of February.
The commission would make proposals on how to proceed. “I believe that we have to take relatively strong measures regarding quality control,” Aschbacher told dpa. He also referred to two failed launches of the predecessor rocket, the Vega. Ensuring the success of the Vega-C was a top priority, Aschbacher said.
Problems began about one year ago, when Russia decided to withdraw its Soyuz rockets from the European spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, the ESA said. In what was a major blow to European space flight, the first commercial mission of the European Vega-C rocket ended in failure shortly after lift-off from French Guiana on December 20. The rocket veered off course a few minutes after it blasted off from Kourou, according to commercial launch service provider Arianespace. (dpa)