European Investment Fund & CNES Sign Agreement to Support Small & Medium Enterprises in Space Sector

KOUROU, French Guiana (CNES PR) — On Wednesday June 22, 2022, Jean-Marc Astorg, Director of Strategy at CNES, and Alain Godard, Managing Director of the European Investment Fund (EIF) signed a partnership agreement at the Guiana Space Center to support SMEs and companies intermediate sizes in the space sector. This in the presence of Kris Peeters, Vice-President of the European Investment Bank (EIB), responsible for the space and defense sector for the institution, and Marie-Anne Clair Director of the Guiana Space Center.

At the beginning of the year, the EIF and the ESA formalized a similar agreement. The agreement comes five months after the launch by Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for the Internal Market, of the CASSINI system supported by the European Union and whose implementation has been entrusted to the EIF. The CASSINI initiative, which aims to mobilize more than one billion euros, is intended to support the development and growth of start-ups in the space sector in order to stimulate private investment in this growing economic sector.

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U.S. Joins the Space for Climate Observatory

SILVER SPRING, Md. (NOAA PR) — This week, the United States joined the Space for Climate Observatory (SCO) initiative, fulfilling the commitment made by Vice President Kamala Harris during her November 2021 visit to France.

Richard Spinrad, Ph.D., Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and Administrator of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) signed the SCO Charter as the lead agency for the United States. He was joined for the signing ceremony by Philippe Étienne, the French ambassador to the United States; Philippe Baptiste, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO of the French National Center for Space Studies (CNES), along with representatives of the White House, NOAA and the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).  

The Space for Climate Observatory is an initiative of the One Planet Summit under the leadership of CNES to combine satellite and in situ data with scientific research to model and track climate change and its impacts at global-to-local scales. It is also working to establish indicators and decision-support tools in a coordinated and cross-disciplinary fashion, including with social and economic sciences, to enhance the global community’s collective ability to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

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France Signs Artemis Accords as French Space Agency Marks Milestone

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, right, and President of the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES) Dr. Philippe Baptiste shake hands following the signing the Artemis Accords Tuesday, June 7, 2022, prior to the CNES 60th Anniversary event at the French Ambassador’s Residence in Washington. France is the twentieth country to sign the Artemis Accords, which establish a practical set of principles to guide space exploration cooperation among nations participating in NASA’s Artemis program. (Credits: NASA/Keegan Barber)

WASHINGTON (NASA PR) — France is the latest country to sign the Artemis Accords, affirming its commitment to  sustainable space exploration that follows a common set of principles promoting beneficial use of space for all of humanity.

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Innovation: CNES Launches Challenge on Artificial Intelligence Applied to Space Transportation

PARIS (CNES PR) — On May 25, CNES launched a new call for projects aimed at all organizations (SMEs, start-ups, industrial groups, research laboratories, schools, universities, etc.) with an innovative project to propose on the subject of intelligence. technology applied to space transport by 2030-2040. Candidates, who have until June 12 to submit their project, may be awarded up to 100,000 euros in funding as well as dedicated support within the framework of CNES innovation plans.

The proposed projects will have to apply artificial intelligence to space transport, with the aim of gaining flexibility, agility and performance, as well as reducing recurring costs without degrading reliability. The projects may in particular relate to the development process of the space transportation system, its manufacturing or control process, its operational phase with the ground installations, the flight phase, the operation of flights or even the phase associated with reuse. of the transportation system.

Technological solutions already applied or in the process of being applied in other transport sectors (automotive, aeronautics, rail, maritime, etc.) will be favoured. Candidates will be evaluated according to the interest and level of maturity of their project.
The holders of the best projects will be invited to come and present them on July 12, 2022 during a Pitch Day organized by the CNES Space Transport Department. The most convincing of them will have the opportunity to sign their financing contract the same day, at the end of the session.

For any request for additional information: innovation-dts@cnes.fr
The application file is available here

International Satellite to Track Impacts of Small Ocean Currents

SWOT’s solar panels unfold as part of a test in January at a Thales Alenia Space facility in Cannes, France, where the satellite is being assembled. SWOT will measure elevations of Earth’s ocean and surface water, giving researchers information with an unprecedented level of detail. (Credits: CNES/Thales Alenia Space)

The Surface Water and Ocean Topography mission will explore how the ocean absorbs atmospheric heat and carbon, moderating global temperatures and climate change.

PASADENA, Calif. (NASA PR) — Though climate change is driving sea level rise over time, researchers also believe that differences in surface height from place to place in the ocean can affect Earth’s climate. These highs and lows are associated with currents and eddies, swirling rivers in the ocean, that influence how it absorbs atmospheric heat and carbon.

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French Startup Gama Raises $2.2 Million to Develop Solar Sails

PARIS (Gama PR) — Gama, a French aerospace company, has raised 2 million euros [USD $2.2 million] with the French Public Investment Bank (BPI), the French Space Agency (CNES) and leading international angel investors to deploy a solar sail in space and revolutionize space transportation.

A solar sail allows a spacecraft to be powered solely by sunlight. This new propulsion technology enables speeds never reached before to explore our Solar System and beyond.

This first round of funding will finance a demonstration mission: the deployment of a solar sail from a satellite launched by SpaceX. Other missions will follow.

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International Sea Level Satellite Takes Over From Predecessor

Meltwater from Greenland glaciers like the one pictured can contribute significantly to sea level rise. Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich monitors the height of Earth’s oceans so that researchers can better understand the amount and rate of sea level rise. (Credits: NASA Earth Observatory using Landsat data from USGS)

Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich, the newest addition to a long line of ocean-monitoring satellites, becomes the reference satellite for sea level measurements.

PASADENA, Calif. (NASA PR) — On March 22, the newest U.S.-European sea level satellite, named Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich, became the official reference satellite for global sea level measurements. This means that sea surface height data collected by other satellites will be compared to the information produced by Sentinel-6 Michael Freilich to ensure their accuracy.

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CNES Selects Exotrail to Optimize Mega Constellation Operations

Illustration of large constellation operations through ExoOPS™ – Operations, Exotrail, cloud-based mission control center software. (Credit: Exotrail)

TOULOUSE, France (Exotrail PR) — In February 2022, following a competitive tender process, CNES selected Exotrail to complete a research and technology study to optimise the operations of mega constellations. The study will focus on mid and low earth orbit where thousands of satellites are soon expected to be operational and propelled by electric propulsion. It will determine the best operational procedures to implement in mega constellation’s flight dynamic system including station keeping and collision avoidance – two critical operations.

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ESA Astronaut Selection Proceeds with Psychological Exams

Arnaud Beck, director of clinical research at MEDES, a health subsidiary of CNES. (Credits: MEDES)

PARIS (ESA PR) — The recruitment of the next ESA astronauts continues. Phase 2 began with the psychotechnical tests and will continue until the end of May with the psychological assessments. 404 French men and women are still in the race.

22,523 Europeans had applied last year to become a member of the European Astronaut Corps. A 1st selection on file selected 1,361, including 250 French and 154 French women, who therefore began phase 2 at the start of the year. And that’s where the serious stuff begins. 

“Phase 2 is divided into 2 stages ,” explains Arnaud Beck, director of clinical research at MEDES, the health subsidiary of CNES, and in charge of organizing part of the tests. The 1st (called phase 2.1) takes place in Hamburg, it involves psycho technical and cognitive tests : memorization, mental calculation… There is also an exercise which takes place in front of a control screen: the candidates must manage several parameters simultaneously, using different joysticks and controllers. They are also assessed on their level of English. This stage, which ends in early March, should see around 400 candidates access phase 2.2, which began on 01/31 in Cologne, at the European Astronaut Center (EAC).

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SpaceFounders Launches Recruitment of its Second Cohort of Startups

Credit: SpaceFounders

PARIS (CNES PR) — SpaceFounders, the European NewSpace start-up accelerator, launched in 2021 at the initiative of CNES and the Bundeswehr University of Munich, is recruiting its new cohort of start-ups with a call for applications open until March 25. If the year 2021 turned out to be extremely rich, the year 2022 promises to be ultra-ambitious.

Online applications: https://www.spacefounders.eu/apply-now

In 2021, SpaceFounders demonstrated its ability to select and support an ultra-promising cohort of European spacetech entrepreneurs. Seed and Series A fundraising for a cumulative amount of more than €70 million is underway for the 10 winning start-ups, in order to innovate across the entire space value chain: space tourism, space surveillance, but also reusable launchers and innovative downstream services, including components for nanosatellites and in-orbit services.

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SpaceFounders, the Factory of Future Space Champions

Emmanuelle Méric (Credits: CNES)

PARIS (CNES PR) — Created by CNES in 2021, SpaceFounders offers ultra-intensive and very high-level support to help startups think big. The explanations of the president of SpaceFounders France, Emmanuelle Méric.

What is SpaceFounders?

Emmanuelle Méric: SpaceFounders is an accelerator for European space startups. This is a public program, created at the initiative of CNES, which brings together a large community of public and private players, foremost among which are ESA and DLR, the German space agency , to bring out new world-class European champions in the space sector. Concretely, SpaceFounders is an entrepreneurship support program intended for managers of Space Tech startups. The ultra-intensive program lasts 3 months, virtually and face-to-face in the heart of European space capitals, and includes meetings, master classes, targeted networking and workshops.

“The great strength of SpaceFounders is the mentoring and connection with leading personalities from the space and digital world and investors.

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France Opens Public Consultation to Devise NewSpace Strategies & Goals

Translated from French by Google Translate

PARIS (CNES PR) — The advent of NewSpace has profoundly upset the space industry and prompted traditional players to review their strategies in the face of multiple initiatives from new private players over the past twenty years. This sector, now more accessible, opens up a considerable number of opportunities and French space players must face up to rapidly changing challenges in order to remain in the international race.

A collective of space players, fully convinced of the need to accelerate the transformation of the ecosystem – 3i3s Europa, Alliance NewSpace France, ASTech Paris Region, CNES, ESA, Eutelsat, Geodesic, GIFAS, ISAE SUPAERO, NewSpace Club, Paris-Saclay Hardware Accelerator, SAFE, Toulouse Capitole University (Sirius Chair) – has therefore decided to organize the first NewSpace Meetings, on July 7 and 8, 2022 at Station F, Paris. It is in this context that a major public consultation has been launched for all interested natural or legal persons.

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CNES Mobilizes for Micro- and Mini-launchers

Illustration of a micro-launcher pad. (Credits: CNES)

PARIS (CNES PR) — Several calls for projects and calls for applications have just been launched in the field of micro and mini-launchers to promote the emergence of French and European projects in this innovative segment, complementary to current launchers.

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CNES/AFD Partnership: Satellite Technologies at the Service of Development Projects

PARIS (CNES PR) — Rémy Rioux, Managing Director of the French Development Agency (AFD) and Philippe Baptiste, Chairman and CEO of CNES, today renewed a partnership agreement to promote AFD’s adoption of satellite technologies for its work. research and development projects.

Sizing energy production infrastructures and access networks, reducing the digital divide, quickly collecting epidemiological data in the field, anticipating the risks of coastal flooding, these are all examples of the challenges that technologies satellites make it possible to take readings in areas that are difficult to access and lack infrastructure and means of in situ observation.

The renewal of this partnership agreement will allow AFD to benefit from the expertise and support of CNES to raise awareness and train its teams in space, collect and analyze needs in order to support the integration of satellite technologies in its projects, one objective pursued by AFD being to eventually have a tool for monitoring and evaluating projects in developing countries.  

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