Europe's Vega rocket launch with United Arab Emirates satellite fails

Europe's Vega rocket launch with United Arab Emirates satellite fails
Vega orbited the PRISMA Earth observation satellite on Arianespace’s third mission in 2019. Flight VV14. PRISMA

The launch of a European Vega rocket carrying an imaging satellite for the United Arab Emirates failed about two minutes after liftoff from the European base in French Guyana.

Arianespace, which markets the satellite, said in a brief statement that the Wednesday night launch ended after a "launcher anomaly occurred" bringing the mission to an early end.

The statement said the anomaly occurred shortly after ignition of the second stage.

It added that an analysis of data quickly got under way and an independent inquiry commission was to be set up.

The launch, with its Falcon Eye 1 payload, was originally set for July 7 but was postponed because of high-altitude winds.

It was the 15th launch of Europe's Vega rocket and its first failure.

-PA

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