Dedicated to ESA’s Earth-observing activities, ESA-ESRIN is the European centre of excellence for exploitation of Earth observation missions. The mission and payload operations of ESA's Earth observation satellites are managed here, and ESRIN is the primary source for the acquisition, distribution, and exploitation of data from these and other non-ESA satellites.
The development at ESRIN of Europe’s small Vega launch vehicle, which took its maiden voyage in February 2012, led to full exploitation in 2015 from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana. Future evolutions of the Vega launch system include the more powerful Vega-C, set to debut in 2020. Space Rider is also being designed and developed at ESRIN. Fully integrated with Vega-C, Space Rider is Europe's first reusable space transportation system for routine access and return from low orbit.
ESRIN also designs and develops all ESA-wide software for corporate applications and is responsible for developing security measures for classified space programmes.
ESA’s Near-Earth Object Coordination Centre (NEOCC) is a core element of ESA’s Planetary Defence Office. Based at ESRIN, the NEOCC is the central access point to an entire network of European near-Earth object data sources and information providers.
Finally, based at ESRIN is the European Centre for Space Records (ECSR). The ECSR appraises and preserves the valuable technical records of completed ESA projects together with their management archives to safeguard this valuable knowledge for generations to come.