Back to Index French German

N° 50–2015: Call for Media: Briefing on the European Data Relay System SpaceDataHighway

11 December 2015

A special briefing on the European Data Relay System will be held on 15 January, after ESA Director General Jan Woerner’s annual meeting of the press in ESA HQ, Paris.

EDRS is a new space and ground infrastructure that provides near-realtime Big Data relay services (up to 50 Tbytes per day) using cutting-edge laser technology. It will dramatically improve access to time-critical data, aiding disaster response by emergency services and maritime surveillance, for example.

EDRS is a public–private partnership between ESA and Airbus Defence and Space. The laser terminal was developed by TESAT-Spacecom and funded by the DLR German Aerospace Center.

The first node will be launched as a hosted payload on the commercial Eutelsat-9B satellite. The launch is scheduled for 24 January, from Baikonur, using a Proton rocket.

The second EDRS node will follow in 2017 as a dedicated satellite.

Airbus Defence and Space will offer EDRS-SpaceDataHighway as a commercial service. Its first customers will be the European Commission’s Copernicus Sentinel-1 and -2 satellites.

The briefing will be shared by the Director General, the Director of Telecommunications & Integrated Applications, Magali Vaissiere, and the Director of Earth Observation, Volker Liebig. Speakers will include Evert Dudok, Airbus Head of Communication, Intelligence & Security, and Gerd Gruppe, Director of Space Administration at the DLR German Aerospace Center. It will be followed by a 20 minute Q&A.

Attending the event

The event will take place at ESA headquarters: 8 rue Mario Nikis, 75015 Paris, France.

Media representatives wishing to attend are requested to register at

The news conference will be livestreamed at Media and the public may ask questions during the briefing on Twitter using the hashtag #askEDRS or by tweeting to @ESA.

About the European Space Agency

The European Space Agency (ESA) provides Europe’s gateway to space.

ESA is an intergovernmental organisation, created in 1975, with the mission to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space delivers benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.

ESA has 22 Member States: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, of whom 20 are Member States of the EU.

ESA has established formal cooperation with seven other Member States of the EU. Canada takes part in some ESA programmes under a Cooperation Agreement.

By coordinating the financial and intellectual resources of its members, ESA can undertake programmes and activities far beyond the scope of any single European country. It is working in particular with the EU on implementing the Galileo and Copernicus programmes.

ESA develops the launchers, spacecraft and ground facilities needed to keep Europe at the forefront of global space activities.

Today, it develops and launches satellites for Earth observation, navigation, telecommunications and astronomy, sends probes to the far reaches of the Solar System and cooperates in the human exploration of space.

Learn more about ESA at

For further information, please contact:

ESA Media Relations Office
Tel: +33 1 53 69 72 99