Telespazio VEGA UK

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Telespazio VEGA UK Ltd.
Private (Subsidiary of Telespazio)
Industry Space
Founded 1978
Headquarters Luton, Bedfordshire, UK
Key people
Peter Young (CEO)
Number of employees
120 (2013)
Parent Telespazio
Website [1]

Telespazio VEGA UK Ltd. is a British space company based in Luton, Bedfordshire. Founded in 1978 by a small group of engineers at the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany, VEGA now works with Space agencies, satellite operators and manufacturers around the world. It works with the European Space Agency (ESA) and ESOC in Germany, European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, ESA Centre for Earth Observation (ESRIN) in Rome, Italy, and European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC) in Madrid, Spain.

Since 1978, VEGA has worked on almost every ESA mission and many other European and international programmes, including Mars Express, the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) for the International Space Station (ISS), the Eumetsat Polar System, and the Ground Segment Development for ADEN.

On 1 January 2011, VEGA Space Ltd, became a part of Telespazio, the Rome-based space systems services company. It was previously a part of Finmeccanica, having been originally acquired in 2008 as VEGA Group PLC.

Telespazio VEGA is an active member of UKspace, the trade association for Britain’s space industry, and is heavily involved with the International Space Innovation Centre based in Harwell.


VEGA was established in 1978 by a small group of engineers at the European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt, Germany, who bid for and won a contract to provide satellite operations support to ESA missions. Since then, VEGA has continued to provide support on the same contract, which has been re-tendered every five years. The company has grown and evolved significantly in the past 32 years, including the following milestones:

  • 1991 – VEGA formed its German subsidiary company, based in Darmstadt, the home of its two largest German-based customers, ESOC and EUMETSAT
  • 1992 – VEGA floated on the London Stock Exchange
  • 2004 – VEGA acquired Anite Systems GmbH (Darmstadt) – a specialist Space ground systems company
  • 2008 – VEGA delisted as PLC from London Stock Exchange, following acquisition by Finmeccanica
  • 2009 – VEGA’s parent in the Finmeccanica Group, SELEX Systems Integration Ltd, continues to trade in the Space domain under the name of VEGA
  • 2010 – VEGA Space Ltd formed as a subsidiary company of SELEX Systems Integration Ltd
  • 2011 – Ownership of VEGA Space Ltd transferred within Finmeccanica to Telespazio (a Finmeccanica / Thales company) on 1 January 2011.


Programme and Procurement Support[edit]

Experienced programme managers, and technology and domain experts and teams are embedded into client organisations to develop and deliver improved organisational performance to generate higher operational value and lower integration risk. These teams provide the management support that enables clients to successfully transform strategy into measurable benefits.[citation needed]

End-to-end Ground Systems[edit]

End-to-end ground segment systems capabilities range across all elements of ground systems including: Mission Control Systems, Satellite and Ground Station Planning Systems; Payload Data Systems; Ground Station System Engineering; Computer Systems and Communications Engineering. The company specialises in ground system concept and design; programme cost and risk analysis; integration, verification and validation; system deployment; and operations concepts.

Simulation and Modelling[edit]

VEGA has developed many operational simulators and been instrumental in the development of ESA’s simulation infrastructure. Solutions developed include: Concept and design simulation; System and functional engineering simulation; Test bed engineering simulation; On-board software verification facilities; Operations and ground segment simulators.

VEGA has developed several products to support these simulation solutions through the lifecycle, working together with ESA or as independent products. These include:

  • SimVis – Concept and design simulation developed to work with Concurrent Design Facilities (CDF). Developed for ESA/ESTEC for mission and system design simulation within the ESTEC CDF.
  • SIMSAT – ESA’s real-time simulation infrastructure – used mainly for development of high fidelity operational satellite simulators.
  • SimsEmu – ESA’s processor emulator, providing high fidelity emulation of the ERC32 and 1750 on-board processors.
  • EGSE-Lite – VEGA’s solution to support development, integration, verification and validation of space-based components with on-board software - via the use of processor emulation.
  • GSTVi – Ground Segment Test and Verification Infrastructure – ESA’s simulation suite to support plug and play testing of ground segment systems
  • STC – the Spacecraft Operations Training Centre - VEGA’s training solution for spacecraft operations combining real-time satellite simulation with effective training courses.

Training Solutions[edit]

VEGA combines advanced learning practices, technology-based training and performance support techniques to identify and bridge human capability gaps, ensuring organisational performance improvement, for individual and team training requirements.[citation needed]

Systems and Operations Engineering[edit]

VEGA's Systems and Operations Engineering capability is focussed on the long-term provision and management of systems and operations engineering teams at scientific, commercial and military satellite operators. The international team of over 100 systems and operations engineers is skilled in all aspects of platform engineering, geostationary, low Earth orbit and interplanetary operations and scientific and telecommunication payloads.

Mobile Satellite Services[edit]

The company provides broadband data and voice services in the world’s remotest locations, using the latest hi-tech satellite communications equipment available.


External links[edit]