Jean-Yves Le Gall first met with Tobias Miethaner, Director General for the Digital Society at the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructures (BMVI). This meeting proved most constructive, focusing on the progress of the Galileo programme, whose 12 satellites already in orbit will be joined by four and possibly six more satellites this year, all of them to be launched from the Guiana Space Centre (CSG).
Jean-Yves Le Gall and DLR Chair Pascale Ehrenfreund then held a bilateral meeting at which they discussed preparations for the next ESA Ministerial Conference. They noted with satisfaction the good progress made on the Ariane 6 programme, in line with the roadmap decided at the last ESA Ministerial Conference in Luxembourg, and reviewed a number of other issues including International Space Station utilization, the ExoMars mission and Earth observation. They also performed a status check of the MeRLiN mission set to measure concentrations of atmospheric methane with unprecedented precision, which was presented at the COP21 climate conference.
After his visit, Jean-Yves Le Gall commented: “DLR is one of CNES’s chief European partners and the especially encouraging results of our collaboration, particularly on Ariane 6 and ISS utilization, bode well for future and even more ambitious partnerships. In this respect, the MeRLiN mission that we have engaged together to enhance our understanding of the mechanisms driving climate change has taken a new step forward in the wake of the success of the COP21 climate conference.”