July 2, 2018

Space cooperation between France and South Korea - CNES briefs KARI and KMA on Space Climate Observatory

CNES President Jean-Yves Le Gall was in South Korea on Monday 2 July to meet the key leaders of the country’s space sector, including Lim Cheol-Ho, President of the Korea Aerospace Research Institute (KARI), and Nam Jae-Cheol, Head of the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA). The main purpose of his visit was for CNES to present the state of progress on the Space Climate Observatory (SCO). It followed the 2nd France-Korea Space Forum in Paris on Tuesday 3 April, organized by CNES and KARI and attended by numerous politicians, scientists, administrative officials and representatives from across the French and Korean space sector. It is part of preparations for South Korean President Moon Jae-In’s state visit to France in October.

The meetings were a chance to strengthen space cooperation between France and Korea around the SCO, which was announced in Paris at the One Planet Summit in December and officially launched at the Toulouse Space Show last week. This CNES initiative is being pursued as part of a vast international partnership with space agencies and other organizations, which agree to share data, pool resources and work together to develop the SCO, which will help us better understand and measure the impacts of climate change and provide decision support to help combat it.

France and South Korea have been working together successfully in space for over 30 years. France has regularly supported the development of South Korea’s space programme by building satellites, designing scientific instruments and equipment and providing launch services. Since the early 2000s, CNES has been involved in the development of KARI’s Earth-observing satellites as well as the design and management of its launch facilities. Since 2015, under an inter-agency agreement, various new actions have been initiated by the two partners, including assistance for the development of the ground segment for South Korea’s new KSLV-2 launch vehicle and support for the rollout of its KASS satellite navigation system, developed by KARI with Thales Alenia Space as prime contractor.

After the meetings, Jean-Yves Le Gall said: “Since my first visit to South Korea for the first France-Korea space days in 1987, it’s always been a huge pleasure to come back to this country. Today, the decision by KARI and the KMA to work with CNES to deliver the SCO reflects Korea’s resolute commitment to fight climate change. It’s a new milestone in the cooperation between our two countries in space, and I look forward to taking it a step further during President Moon’s visit to France in October.”

Pascale Bresson    Press officer     Tel: +33 (0)1 44 76 75 39     pascale.bresson@cnes.fr
Raphaël Sart    Press officer     Tel: +33 (0)1 44 76 74 51     raphael.sart@cnes.fr