The European Union has launched a satellite connection system and deepened its work on space traffic management.

Today, the Union is working within the framework of its space ambitions by presenting two initiatives: a control proposal Secure spatial connection And a joint communication EU approach to space traffic management. Space technologies are crucial to facilitate everyday life and contribute to a more digital, greener and more resilient future for our planet. As a major space power, the European Union’s space program already provides valuable data and services on a daily basis in support of a wide range of applications, including transportation, agriculture, crisis response or the fight against climate change.

However, in order for the space to bring all its advantages to the Union, its space policy needs to be constantly evolving and adapting to new challenges and intensifying international competition. Today’s initiatives will help us preserve the efficiency and security of our current means while developing state-of-the-art European space technology for the benefit of the people and economy of the Union.

Secure spatial connection

In today’s digital world, spatial connectivity is a strategic resource for the resilience of unions. It strengthens economic power, digital leadership and technological sovereignty, competition and social progress. Secure connectivity has become a public good for European states and their citizens. So the Commission is presenting an ambitious plan Secured space Union system for telecommunications:

  • This system will give a guarantee Uninterrupted, long-term global access to secure, affordable satellite telecommunications services. It will contribute to critical infrastructure security, surveillance, external operations, crisis management and applications required for member states’ economies, security and defense.
  • It will also provide for the provision of capable commercial services, enabled by the private sector For European citizens and businesses To access Modern, reliable and fast connection – even in the ‘dead zone’ of communication – and this will ensure coordination among member states. This is one of the 2030 goals of the proposed digital decade. The system will connect geographical areas of strategic interest, such as Africa and the Arctic, in line with the Union’s Global Gateway strategy.

The demands of government users are rapidly changing and so are satellite telecommunication solutions. The Union’s system for secure space telecommunications aims to meet these growing and evolving needs. It will also consider the latest quantum communication technologies for secure encryption. It will be based on the development of innovative and disruptive technologies as well as the exploitation of new space ecosystems.

The total cost is estimated at 6 billion euros. Between 2022 and 2027, the union’s contribution to the program is বর্তমান 2.4 billion at current prices. Funding will come from various public sector sources [budget de l’Union, États membres, contributions de l’Agence spatiale européenne (ESA)] And private sector investment.

The initiative will further increase the competition for the union’s space ecosystem: in fact, the development of a new infrastructure will bring in a gross added value of between 17 and 24 billion euros and create jobs in the union’s aerospace industry. In addition, positive economic spillovers will be felt in downstream sectors that employ innovative connectivity services. The public will benefit from the technical advantages, reliability and operational performance of these satellite telecommunication services by ensuring extremely high-speed Internet connection throughout the Union.

Space traffic management

The new development of reusable launchers, small satellites and private space enterprises is leading to an increase in the number of satellites in orbit, which seriously threatens the resilience and security of Union space resources and member states. Maintaining the long-term sustainability of space activities is essential for maintaining a safe, secure and efficient environment. Space traffic management therefore constitutes a matter of priority public policy, for which the Union must work today, collectively and multilaterally, to ensure safe, secure and effective use of space for future generations.

In this context, Joint Communications defines an EU approach to space traffic management. The aim is to develop concrete initiatives, including operations and legislation, to promote safe, secure and sustainable use of space while maintaining the strategic autonomy of the Union and the competitiveness of European industries.

The EU’s approach is based on four axes:

  • Evaluation Requirements for civilian and military space traffic management and the impact of space traffic management For union;
  • Strengthen Technical ability Spacecraft and space debris detection and track union;
  • Determine Appropriate ideological and legal framework;
  • Tied International partnership In the field of space traffic management and dialogue Multilateral planning.

Statement of the members of the Commissioner’s College

In Margaret VestagerExecutive Vice President, says: “Space technology is essential to our daily lives and our security. Today’s initiatives will always ensure a secure and efficient connection Both the citizen and the state will benefit. It will play a key role in the digital transformation of Europe and make us more competitive. I hope an EU approach to space traffic management and space technology will ensure safe and sustainable use of space in the long run. “

Joseph BorelThe Union High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy said: “Space is busier than ever, increasing the complexity and risks associated with space operations. To address this global challenge, today we are proposing the EU approach to space traffic management. We will develop concrete capabilities to ensure safe, secure and sustainable use of space. Space Traffic Management is a civilian business, but European security and defense rely on secure, secure and autonomous access to space.

Thierry BretonThe domestic market commissioner said: “Space plays a growing role in our daily lives, our economic growth, our security and our geopolitical weight. Our new connectivity infrastructure will provide very high speed Internet access, replace our existing Internet infrastructure, improve our resilience and cyber security.” It will be a pan-European project that will allow many of our start-ups and the whole of Europe to be at the forefront of technological innovation. “

Context

The two initiatives taken today are specific successes under the action plan for coordination between the civilian, aerospace and defense industries, where these two flagship projects are mentioned.

Secure connection

To implement this new space initiative to ensure secure connectivity across Europe, the Commission launched a preliminary study of the system in December 2020, to examine the technical aspects and service delivery models that could be considered.

In parallel, the Commission has issued an additional call, aimed at integrating the European ecosystem of the new space, to integrate the innovative and avant-garde technological concepts of SMEs and start-ups. Two contracts were awarded in December 2021; The technical work is now underway, and the results are expected by June 2022.

Space traffic management

Since 2016, the Union has already had a space surveillance and tracking device (SST) for objects in orbit, which has been implemented by the EU SST Consortium. To date, 130 European organizations from 23 member states have registered with the EU SST services (conflict avoidance, fragment analysis, re-entry analysis). More than 260 EU satellites, including Galileo and Copernicus Fleet, are currently benefiting from the collision avoidance service.

In 2021, EU SST consortium partners spread 100 million measurements through their data sharing platform. Most recently, the EU SST Consortium’s Fragmentation Service confirmed the detection and tracking of space debris following the destruction of a satellite in low orbit (COSMOS 1408) following an anti-satellite test conducted by Russia on 15 November 2021.

To know more

Questions and answers about secure connections

Secure connectivity fact sheet

Space Traffic Management Questions and Answers

Space Traffic Management Fact Sheet

Space package webpage

Joint Communication: An EU Approach to Space Traffic Management – An EU Contribution to Addressing a Global Challenge

Proposes a regulation establishing a union program for secure connections for the period 2023-2027

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