August 26, 2016

France-Norway space cooperation - CNES meets NSC

Thursday 25 August in Longyearben in the Svalbard archipelago, CNES President Jean-Yves Le Gall met Bo Andersen, Director General of the Norwegian Space Centre (NSC). As well as heading their national space agencies, Jean-Yves Le Gall and Bo Andersen are also Co-Chairs of the Council of the European Space Agency (ESA).

Since signing their framework cooperation agreement in 2007, CNES and NSC have forged ever-closer ties at both bilateral and European levels.

Jean-Yves Le Gall and Bo Andersen reviewed the projects the two nations are pursuing together: the IASI-NG project, with the LASE (LAser Source Electronics) device developed by Norwegian firm Konsberg (KDA), and activities concerning ionospheric propagation in northern regions, which have been extended for a further year.

The two agency heads also discussed topics that will be on the agenda at the upcoming ESA Ministerial Council meeting this December in Lucerne, notably launchers, International Space Station utilization, the ExoMars programme and ESA-EU relations. In this respect, they also discussed the evolution of the Galileo programme in which Norway is participating under a special bilateral agreement.

CNES’s President showed a keen interest in the University of Svalbard, which he visited during his trip, and notably in the development of the Svalbard Integrated Earth Observing System (SIOS), a new space-based system to add to the arsenal of tools now available to support efforts to curb climate change in which France and CNES are playing a leading role in the wake of the success of the COP 21 conference and the adoption of the New Delhi Declaration.

After his visit to Norway, Jean-Yves Le Gall commented: “France and Norway have always succeeded in establishing very constructive ties in space at both bilateral level and through European programmes. I would like to thank Bo Andersen for our meeting today, which paves the way for future joint endeavours as we prepare to mark the 10th anniversary of our framework cooperation agreement next year.”

Pascale Bresson    Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 75 39
Julien Watelet    Tel. +33 (0)1 44 76 78 37