During the current lockdown, CNES has adapted its organization to protect the health of its workforce, play its part in the national effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic and sustain the nation’s economic activity.
To this end, the agency has instituted home working on a massive scale across its four field centres in Paris Les Halles, Paris Daumesnil, at the Toulouse Space Centre and at the Guiana Space Centre, thanks to the capacity of its information system and the huge efforts of its staff.
However, CNES’s response plan requires certain employees to be physically present on site and all steps have been taken to ensure they can carry out all of their tasks to the usual high standards of quality while strictly applying the recommended distancing and transmission reduction precautions.
A space economy observatory for a shared French vision
In a shifting environment that is a source of both opportunities and threats, where the positions and alliances of sectors and players alike are moving fast, now more than ever is the time to adopt a shared vision. To meet the new challenges ahead, CNES, teaming with its network of partners outside the agency, has set up a space economy observatory.
This observatory aims to share information and insights into the economic impacts on businesses, research laboratories and academia. To this end, it has rapidly established a weekly dialogue with leading space industry players and SMEs, mid-tier firms and start-ups through competitiveness clusters, boosters, ESA BICs and regional councils.
The speed with which CNES has moved to put in place this space economy observatory has drawn industry-wide praise. And as space is such a fiercely competitive sector, the observatory is already looking to the longer term beyond the current crisis.
A catalogue to promote French space industry capabilities in export markets
Thanks to the pro-active industrial policy it has pursued for over half a century and sustained through targeted government investment, France today has a strong and competitive space industry renowned worldwide for its quality and reliability.
The French space industry catalogue is geared towards promoting cooperation between space agencies, research institutes and industry, and encouraging prospective partners to turn to France as a reflex response. It is open to French firms with a significant stake in designing, developing, producing and operating space systems.
This new catalogue will enable users to easily match capabilities to requirements through a one-stop shop with a geolocation tool, search engine and contractor profiles. The catalogue can be viewed here.
Further down the line, as announced at the last Innovation Day in Toulouse, a CNES label will be created to boost the visibility of SMEs in the space products and services sector.
ActInSpace 2020 rescheduled to 13 and 14 November
ActInSpace® is a major international competition initiated by CNES and co-organized with ESA, with support from ESA BIC Sud France outside France. A 24-hour event somewhere between a start-up week-end and a hackathon, it challenges competing teams to come up with products and services for the future based on satellite data and space technologies.
Operated once again this year by Aerospace Valley, which manages ESA BIC Sud France, ActInSpace® is open to teams of two to five people from all over the world and from all horizons. They will have 24 hours to take up one of the challenges set by CNES and ESA using the agencies’ patents or data provided by the event’s partners (Airbus, GSA, ESSP, SES, WEKEO, DGA/IAD, ASI, CLS/Kinéis, GreenTechVerte and others).
Due to restrictions in response to the current pandemic, the event has been rescheduled to 13 and 14 November.