September 21, 2020


Tuesday 22 September, CNES and the French Radiology Society (Société Française de Radiologie - SFR) will be announcing the signature of a partnership agreement at the Journées Francophones de Radiologie (French-speaking Radiology Days) conference running from 2 to 5 October.

CNES and SFR wish to work together in the field of medical and satellite imagery to develop new methods while sharing their expertise, raising awareness of their respective activities and meshing their various ecosystems (research scientists, manufacturers, training providers, etc.).

The partners have identified three main areas of action:
1.    The need for innovative medical imaging technologies for deep space exploration
2.    Interventional radiology for deep space exploration
3.    Development of innovative medical and satellite image-processing technologies and methods

Human spaceflight missions in microgravity were soon seen as an opportunity to gain new insights into how the human body works and gain a deeper understanding of certain pathologies. As a result, work in the realm of health for space missions has progressively been complemented by research into space serving healthcare.

CNES’s Chief Operating Officer Lionel Suchet commented: “The development of this partnership with the French Radiology Society will create new synergies between two sectors that may appear at first sight to share little in common. It is through cross-disciplinary efforts and new partnerships with centres of excellence like SFR that we are innovating for healthcare here on Earth and in space. Forging closer ties between space and healthcare is also one of the main thrusts of our ConnectByCnes initiative geared towards opening up the world of space to new areas of activity.”

SFR President Professor Jean-François Meder, for whom the radiology community is seeking to open up new scientific horizons, in particular by establishing points of convergence between medical imagery and space missions, added: “The development of new imaging tools, notably for body morphometry and tele-radiology, and current advances in interventional radiology directly concern the health of astronauts in space. At the same time, developments underway in new medical image analysis and processing tools making increasing use of artificial intelligence to remove noise from ultrasound and magnetic resonance imagery are leveraging the same advances as those optimizing satellite Earth imagery. Our respective scientific communities and ecosystems have many things in common.”

Pascale Bresson    Press Officer    Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 75 39
Raphaël Sart    Press Officer    Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 74 51