As part of the ELDO (European Launcher Development Organization) Europa program, it was envisaged to test the upper stages of the launcher by using an experimental rocket named Cora. This rocket was to comprise a Coralie first stage (France), an Astris second stage (Germany) and a fairing (Italy). The Cora 1 version was to comprise only one active stage topped by mockups whereas the Cora 2 version was to be a two-stage vehicle. Only the first version was actually carried out and tested three times.
The Coralie stage was manufactured by the Vernor GIE (LRBA and Nord Aviation). It was 5.50 m long, 2 m in diameter, weighed 12 t and carried 9.85 t of storable propellants (NTO and UDMH). Its four nozzle engine developed 268 kN (ISp = 280 sec) in vacuum. In Cora version, the nozzle divergents were shorter to be adapted to low altitude operation. A cylindrical back ring supporting four fins had been added at the base of the stage.
With his specific fairing, although derived from that of Europa,
Cora measured 11.5 m high, for a constant diameter of 2 m, and weighed 16.5 t at takeoff.
Three rounds were launched: twice in Hammaguir and once at Biscarosse. It is thus the largest rocket
which was launched from Western Europe, unfortunately without success.
|27 Nov 1966||HMG||Cora G1||Technology||PS, control loss after 62 sec|
|18 Dec 1966||HMG||Cora G2||Technology||S|
|25 Oct 1967||BIS||Cora G3||Technology||VF, wiring problem|