ESA chief steps into launcher hornet’s nest, gets stung, attempts course correction

by Peter B. de Selding

PARIS — European Space Agency chief Jan Woerner stepped into the hornet’s nest of European launcher policy on Feb. 11. Predictably, he got stung, and on Feb. 15 he tried to change course.

He said he did not mean to cast doubt on ESA’s 2014 decision to invest several billion euros in the new Ariane 6 and upgraded Vega-C rockets. He only wanted to suggest that even as Europe prepares this excellent main dish, it should be thinking of future recipes.

Woerner’s ESA predecessor, with a . . .

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