Initially scheduled at 3.51 Italian on 19 June, the launch of Vega from the European base in Kourou had been postponed for the first time on 21 June, but the persistence of high altitude winds forced a new postponement, as soon as the weather conditions allow. After the new Arianespace decision to suspend the preparations for the launch on 21 June, the ESA launcher built in Italy by Avio is safe, as well as its load of 53 mini satellites stowed in the first stage thanks to the SMS system ( Small Spacecraft Mission Service).
The latter, a modular dispenser that allows a large number of small satellites weighing between one and 500 kilograms to be sent into orbit at the same time, is the most awaited novelty of this launch, intended to open space to new markets thanks to reduced costs. launches and making them accessible to universities and small and medium enterprises.
In the SMS dispenser 7 microsatellites were loaded, placed in the upper part, and 46 nanosatellites in the lower part, developed by 21 customers from 13 countries including Italy, represented by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and by the Federico Ii universities of Naples, Rome Tor Vergata, Rome Three and Bologna.
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