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The competition heats up: In its effort to build Ariane 6 by 2020, Airbus Safran has begun testing of that rocket’s upper stage Vinci engine.
This test phase, set to last until September, will include running the engine repeatedly as well as for as long as 1,000 seconds. Once they have determined the engine’s design, behavior, and overall thrust, they will be able to design and build the upper stage.