LESER takes off
A new Ariane rocket launchpad generation is equipped with LESER safety valves.
For the next generation of the ARIANE launcher series in French Guiana a new launch pad with all necessary supply systems is developed. After a successful presentation, LESER France was approved by CNES (National Space Research Center) and a part of ESA (European Space Agency) as supplier for the sixth generation of the ARIANE VI launch vehicle.
The project was a joint effort between LESER France in Toulouse, the employees of the Division Europe and the project management in Hamburg.
The actual project was divided into two separate orders from Air Liquide for the cryogenic process and Cegelec for the conventional temperature range. The safety valves serve to protect the pressurized tank filling process.
Helium and nitrogen are transferred in the conventional process, while hydrogen is also used in the cryogenic process. According to the specifications, the valves must be equipped with SPG flanges. These have a better tightness than standard flanges. The special feature of these flanges is the high specification of the sealing surface roughness.
At the end of 2017, Anthony Chiffot (Technical Sales, LESER France) and Julian Witt (Technical Sales, Division Europa received the order for the Cegelec package. The SPG grooved flanges were manufactured by LESER under licence. They were inspected by SPG at the LESER acceptance centre in Hohenwestedt.
The customer's auditors paid particular attention to the absence of oil and grease as well as foreign bodies inside the valves during the further acceptance tests. Other important criteria were the passivation and pickling of the surfaces and the accuracy of the center to face dimensions.
The cryogenic process part of the order was handled by the sales team led by Benjamin Julia (France Sales Team Lead) and Elvir Hamidovic (Customer Consultant, LESER De).
The last valves for Cegelec were reported ready for shipment in June. As far as the cryogenic package is concerned, this project is in full swing. The next step will be to agree the audit with Air Liquide.
The total order volume was around 200,000 Euro, 90 safety valves and 3,300 pages of documentation and certificates.
Quality plays a particularly important role in a space rocket project. The large number of documents required clearly demonstrates this in figures. The project is therefore a good reference to prove LESER's quality standards and capabilities in the handling of particularly demanding projects.
When the new ARIANE VI rocket launches in July 2020, the LESER technology will play a decisive role.