ESA and NIVR sign agreement for User Support and Operations Centre at ESTEC

Mr J. Feustel-Büechl and Mr B. Droste sign agreement for USOC at ESTEC
26 February 2002

On Tuesday 19 February, Mr J. Feustel-Büechl, Director of Manned Spaceflight and Microgravity, and Mr B. Droste, Chairman of the Board of NIVR (Netherlands Agency for Aerospace Programmes) signed the agreement on a special financial contribution by the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs to the creation of the Erasmus User Support and Operation Centre (USOC).

The Erasmus USOC will be installed in the Erasmus Building at ESA's European Space and Technology Centre (ESTEC) and will add to the existing International Space Station User Information Centre and the European Robotic Arm Support Centre.

The Erasmus USOC will be responsible for the preparation and execution of the operation of the European Drawer Rack (EDR), which is a flexible multi-user facility located inside the Columbus Laboratory, and of the European Technology Exposure Facility located on the Columbus external platform.

The agreement permits the procurement of operation test equipment and software dedicated to the EDR. It complements the participation of Belgian industry previously agreed with the Belgian delegation, which focuses on the first EDR payload: Protein Crystallisation Diagnostics Facility (PCDF).

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