France, Germany Agree On Next-Gen Rocket Estimates

By Amy Svitak .
Source: Aviation Week & Space Technology .

After six months of back-and-forth, and with a key budget meeting fast approaching, France and Germany staked out a modest but crucial piece of common ground last month: In the debate over whether to start work on Europe's next-generation launch vehicle, the tab for building a successor to the Ariane 5 will run €3.8-5 billion ($5-6.5 billion) over a decade. The agreement between the French and German space agencies, however, is just the beginning. Detailed in a report delivered to their respective governments in recent weeks, the cost estimate is only a point of departure from which the often polarized partners will move forward this fall, when European Space Agency (ESA) ministers meet in Caserta, Italy, to settle the organization's multi-year spending program ...

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