Monday 16 September, CNES President Jean-Yves Le Gall received members of the press for a briefing on the stellar successes of 2019, including the signing of the founding document of the Space Climate Observatory (SCO), the new national military space policy and the billionth Galileo user, and presented the calendar of events for the end of this year, with the agency’s Science Survey Seminar, the International Aeronautical Congress (IAC), the European ministerial conference in Seville and the launch of the ANGELS satellite.
From 8 to 10 October, Le Havre will be playing host to CNES’s Science Survey Seminar, which will be identifying science priorities to inform future programme decisions for projects to be developed over the next decade and exploitation of their science data well beyond.
CNES and its partners are tasked with analysis of parameters required to match science priorities to the human and financial resources dictated by technical, industrial, cooperation and sustainability policies. Planning work and findings will be formally recorded in a report at the end of the seminar. This work is vital to map out a vision beyond the horizon of projects currently underway.
From 21 to 25 October, the 70th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) will be taking place in Washington D.C. Taking for its theme ‘Space: the power of the past, the promise of the future’, this major event for the international space community attracts several thousand participants from more than 80 countries.
IAC will be turning the spotlight on cooperation agreements and partnerships, and presenting programmes and missions for five days dedicated to astronautics.
CNES will be showcasing France’s space programme to international visitors and bringing together the members of the Space Climate Observatory (SCO) to set out its governance and scope of responsibilities.
IAC will be taking place in Dubai in 2020 and in Paris in 2021, coinciding with CNES’s 60th anniversary.
On 27 and 28 November, the ESA Ministerial Council will be meeting for Space19+ in Seville. The main programmatic items on the agenda will concern consolidating space access policy, laying out the next steps in space exploration and maintaining the satellite industry’s competitive edge.
Preparations for the ministerial meeting are underway and CNES is working closely with French manufacturers through the CoSpace government-industry space coordination committee and bilateral discussions. The process kicked off by canvassing and ranking needs at CNES in October 2018. The first costings were established starting in January this year, at the same time as ESA presented and refined programme proposals through its programmes committees.
Budget scenarios and programmatic priorities have been established jointly by CNES and GIFAS, the French aerospace industries association.
The end of the year will see the launch of ANGELS, the first French commercial nanosatellite. Developed by Hemeria with support from CNES, ANGELS is a demonstrator that will be carrying an Argos data collection payload.
Called Argos-Neo, this payload is a precursor of a new generation of low-cost highly miniaturized instruments designed to fly on constellations of nanosatellites. The ANGELS project, kicked off in March 2017, aims to develop a range of commercial satellites weighing less than 50 kilograms designed for radiofrequency-type operational missions like spectrum surveillance or data collection, as well as high-revisit-rate, medium-resolution Earth remote sensing and space surveillance and tracking.
CNES is thus looking to nurture a French series of nanosatellites of which ANGELS is the first.
On the sidelines of today’s briefing, Jean-Yves Le Gall commented: “2019 has been a stellar year for space, with the signing of the founding document of the Space Climate Observatory (SCO), the new national military space policy and the billionth Galileo user among the historic successes accomplished. And with what’s still to come between now and the end of the year, it’s safe to say that 2019 is likely to go down as a really great year for space. More than ever, CNES is fired by the spirit of space!”