ESA Bulletin 144 (November 2010)
Set for launch next month and codenamed ‘MagISStra’, the next ESA astronaut flight will see Italian Paolo Nespoli fly to the International Space Station for a six-month stay in space. Read the Bulletin and other publications online, with our visualiser tool.
We follow Paolo through some of his training over the last two years, and look at the background of the mission, seeing why each of these flights is a remarkable team achievement involving coordination between ESA’s Directorates of Human Spaceflight, Operations and Infrastructure, ESA’s corporate services and European industry, in cooperation with the ISS international partners.
In The Seeds of Disruptive Innovation, we look at the work of the Advanced Concepts Team, which is helping ESA and the European space sector to not only foresee, but also to enable our future in space. Although space will remain essentially the same, the scope, purpose and types of our use of space in the future are likely to be very different. Many of these will be influenced by innovation in sectors and areas that are not necessarily on the ‘radar screens’ today of space agencies and industry. Indeed, many ideas we have seen in popular science fiction might not always be far from possibility.
Also in this issue, we look at the risk of ‘bird strikes’, a serious problem in aviation flight safety. Tackling this urgent issue, FlySafe is one of the first pre-operational services developed by ESA’s Integrated Applications Promotion (IAP) programme.
In the last issue of ESA's flagship magazine for 2010, we look back on A Big Year for a Small Satellite, after a successful first year in orbit, Proba-2 has confirmed that a microsatellite can provide the required performance for challenging missions. Less than a cubic metre in volume, Proba-2 is one of the smallest missions ever flown by ESA. But judged by performance per kilogram, Proba-2 can also claim to be among the most scientifically and technically productive.
The Bulletin is published four times a year to inform the space-interested public of ESA’s activities. In addition to a wide range of articles, every issue provides an overview of the status of ESA's major space projects.