Saturday 7 December 2019

Boldly going: UK invests in Euro space missions

Satellite: ESA image of a planned mission aimed at tackling climate change
Satellite: ESA image of a planned mission aimed at tackling climate change

Nina Massey

The UK Space Agency has committed £374m (€438m) a year to the European space programme.

The funding will contribute towards international space initiatives to address climate change, deliver high-speed mobile technology and return the first samples from Mars.

The £347m per year for five years - the UK's largest ever investment in the European Space Agency (ESA) - will help deliver international space programmes.

The UK's investment secures its involvement in building the Lunar Gateway - a new space station orbiting the moon, returning the first samples from Mars, and removing space junk to prevent collisions in space.

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The ESA also has plans for new satellites to help better understand climate change and conduct research in space technology that will deliver high-speed mobile technology such as 5G and satellite broadband services. .

At its ministerial council in Seville ESA confirmed that all astronauts from the class of 2009 will return to the International Space Station before 2024.

In total, ESA member states committed €14.4bn to its projects for the next five years.

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