The objectives of the study are:
- To identify telecommunication satellite missions exploiting the benefits of VEGA, a compact launcher with attractive launch service prices, that translates into a commercial competitive advantage for the operator.
- To specify the main envelope characteristics of the mission satellite(s).
- To propose potential demonstration missions and the programmatic roadmaps to validate the feasibility and the benefits of using the current VEGA launcher and the evolution that would be needed to maximize the benefits for future telecommunication satellite missions.
The challenge is to identify the best solution that will offer operators the lowest cost per capacity in orbit for the target market, taking into account telecommunication satellite platform and payload evolution together with the impact on the VEGA launcher evolution.
The recently small capacity launcher service made available by ELV S.p.A. through its VEGA launcher and its future evolution(s) may open the door to new telecommunication satellite missions increase the competitiveness of current ones through its attractive launcher service costs.
The successful introduction of VEGA into the commercial satellite telecommunication market could prove extremely valuable both for the launcher service provider in order to extend its addressable market and the telecommunication satellites operators if favourable commercial opportunities are identified.
No system architecture is available yet.
Several mission scenarios will be defined and analysed using the results from the preliminary VEGA performance and satellite transfer time analyses and in accordance with the results from the interviews with operators.
In agreement with the Agency, two mission scenarios will be selected for further analysis. For each of the two mission scenarios, several space system architecture parameters will be considered and traded-off to reach a baseline design.
One mission scenario will then be selected as a possible candidate for a mission demonstration. Three aspects of the mission demonstration will be investigated: programmatics, technology roadmap, and cost.