Towards a new inspiring era of collaborative space exploration
In recent years, space exploration has topped the agenda of most space-faring countries. This interest in solar system exploration can be illustrated by the development of the U.S. Vision for Space Exploration, the European Space Agency (ESA) Aurora programme, as well as robotic exploration missions under development in India, China, Japan and Russia. This is completed by the fact that there is now a new context in space affairs resulting from a new international landscape after the end of the Cold War that has opened an opportunity for the definition of a new framework for international relations in space. Furthermore, recent geopolitical developments, combined with the funding constraints of the various space-faring countries, have made it clear that greater international cooperation will be important for major future space activities. This is particularly true for a long-term space exploration programme due to the increasing complexity of such missions. However, just as important as the destination, the journey, when done as an international cooperative effort, will be able to inspire and motivate a wide international community to back mankind’s next grand challenge and open a new phase of space exploration.
KeywordsSpace Activity International Cooperation Space Exploration European Space Agency Exploration Programme
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