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Experimental Italian space capsule Mini-IRENE launched

Test of innovative thermal-protection re-entry systems

(ANSA) - ROME, NOV 23 - An experimental Italian space capsule equipped with technology that enables it to re-enter Earth, the Mini-IRENE, was launched on Wednesday from the Esrange base in Kiruna, Sweden, thanks to an agreement with the Swedish Space Corporation (SSC).
    Funded by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) as part of the General Support Technology programme of the European Space Agency European Space Agency (ESA), the Mini-IRENE capsule was designed in Campania by the Italian Aerospace Research Centre (Cira), with the Federico II University of Naples and the Ali Scarl consortium, along with Lead Tech, Euro.soft and SRS Ed.
    The capsule's main goal is to test an innovative deployment-and-thermal-protection system with a 250 km altitude suborbital mission.
    After returning into the atmosphere, the Mini-IRENE's special umbrella shape enables it to have a stable parachuted flight and a low-speed landing, without additional deceleration systems.
    Photo: Italian Space Agency (ASI) President Giorgio Saccoccia.


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