Posts: 23493 From: Houston, TX Registered: Nov 1999
posted November 05, 2008 08:29 PM
European Space Agency (ESA) video release
Intermediate eXperimental Vehicle (IXV)
In 2013, Vega will carry ESA's Intermediate eXperimental Vehicle into space. The vehicle will then return to Earth to test a range of enabling systems and technologies for atmospheric re-entry. The video shows computer-generated animations of the vehicle and its mission.
The IXV objectives are the design, development, manufacturing, and on-ground and in-flight verification of an autonomous European lifting and aerodynamically controlled re-entry system. Among the critical technologies of interest, special attention is being paid to: advanced instrumentation for aerodynamics and aerothermodynamics; thermal protection and hot-structures solutions; guidance, navigation and flight control through a combination of jets and aerodynamic flaps.
IXV will be launched in 2013 from Europe's spaceport at Kourou, French Guiana, using the new Vega small launch vehicle. After re-entering the Earth's atmosphere and being slowed down by air drag, IXV will descend by parachute and land in the Pacific Ocean to await recovery and post-flight analysis.