ESA PR 19-2011. ESA Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain met EDA Chief Executive Claude-France Arnould at the Paris Air & Space Show today to sign an Administrative Arrangement on cooperation between ESA and the European Defence Agency.
The conclusion of the Administrative Arrangement follows the invitation sent by the Head of the European Defence Agency (EDA), Baroness Ashton, to ESA’s Director General to enter negotiations for the establishment of such an Arrangement and its approval by the EU Council and the ESA Council in May and June 2011, respectively.
“I am convinced that an increased dialogue and coordination between the space and defence communities is of mutual interest and will allow European space programmes to better support Europe’s security and defence needs,” said Mr Dordain. “Reinforcing the cooperation between EDA and ESA will allow us to further develop the security dimension of the European Space Policy in coordination with other EU stakeholders.”
The aim of the Arrangement is to provide a structured relationship and a mutually beneficial cooperation between ESA and EDA through the coordination of their respective activities.
The cooperation will in particular aim at exploring the added value and contribution of space assets to the development of European capabilities in the area of crisis management and the Common Security and Defence Policy.
“The signature of this Arrangement will allow to consolidate our already close and fruitful working relations with the European Space Agency,” said Ms Arnould. “I am looking forward to explore further synergies between the needs of the defence community and ESA activities to the benefit of our respective Member States.”
Building on their specific complementary roles and activities, ESA and EDA are already cooperating on a variety of subjects, including Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, Satellite Communi-cation in support of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), and Space Situational Awareness, as well as critical space technologies.
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The Administrative Arrangement concluded between ESA and EDA foresees that their cooperation will involve in particular:
- Identify those capability gaps or shortfalls that could be filled by space assets for the sustainable and effective implementation of the relevant EU policies;
- Investigate whether identified capability requirements can be shared and thus supported by both EDA and ESA;
- Coordinate research, technology and demonstration activities, including access to study results as appropriate and subject to their respective rules;
- Investigate synergies between existing dedicated EDA and ESA programmes and their future evolution;
- Explore synergies and coordinate activities in support of industrial competitiveness and European non-dependence issues.
Within the scope of this cooperation, ESA and EDA may enter into implementing arrangements for specific projects in accordance with their respective rules and procedures.
A first Implementing Arrangement will be concluded shortly in the area of UAS Command and Control over Satellite for a joint demonstration mission.
Other activities of common interest focus on:
- Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance,
- Civil-military synergies in Earth observation,
- Satellite communications,
- Space Situational Awareness,
- Critical space technologies for European non-dependence.