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- Type: VAB
- Class: ship
- Part Count: 33
- Mods: 5
- Contares Common
- New TantaresLV
- Squad (stock)
During the 1990s as part of its responsibilities towards the International Space Station (ISS) the European Space Agency (ESA) agreed to develop a logistics resupply spacecraft, the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV). The Ariane 5 rocket was selected to be the ATV’s lifter and after a number of delays the first ATV, Jules Verne, was successfully launched in March 2008. It was followed by four additional ATVs with the program officially retired the ATV in 2012 with the program finally concluding with the launching and de-orbiting of ATV-5 in February 2015. While there are no plans to build any more it is being used as a possible basis for the Orion spacecraft among a number of other proposals.
The Ariane 5 was developed and built in the 1990s as a heavy lifter replacement for highly successful Ariane 4 as well as being able to lift nearly double its payload. It continues to be the heavy lifter backbone of the ESA and has had over 80 successful missions with only 2 partial failures and 2 complete failures. It will continue to operate through 2023 with its eventual replacement by the Ariane 6. The ES/ESA variant of the Ariane 5 was used to launch the ATV missions to the ISS.
The Aliyana 5A is an approximation of the Ariane 5 ES/ESA and simply a main stage with powerful solid rocket boosters. The main engine and boosters are fired together with the boosters being exhausted in the lower upper atmosphere and the main engine continuing the ascent and orbital circularization. It is designed to lift payloads of 6-7 tonnes into LKO (Low Kerbin Orbit) so could effectively be used to launch small stations or modules for larger one.
The C-ATV (Contares Automated Transfer Vehicle) is an approximation of the ATV and weighs in at 6.36t but carries considerable supplies including more than 800 units of monopropellent as well as a bit of liquid fuel. It uses monopropellent engines for its rendezvous and docking with a reasonable amount of thrust compared to similar engines. While it is meant to be a logistics resupply craft for a large space station it could also be converted for a number of other purposes including refueling stranded craft.
Built in the VAB in KSP version 1.6.1.
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