$12.8 billion budget approved for European Space Agency

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Science ministers from the 20 member states of the European Space Agency on Wednesday approved a budget of €10 billion ($12.8 billion) over the next three years, coming close to the agency’s request despite the continent’s economic woes.


The budget includes funds for the eventual transition over the course of the decade to the Ariane 6 rocket, a more flexible launch system than the current one that would allow the space agency to launch small, medium and large satellites.”

Today, the Ariane 6 is born,” ESA spokesman Franco Bonacina said.

The ESA will first build a modified version of the current Ariane 5, called the Ariane ME, before launching the Ariane 6.

Written By: AP
continue to source article at msnbc.msn.com

6 COMMENTS

  1. They are funding Mars exploration along with Russia, where NASA has pulled out.

     
    Europe OKs Funding for Mars Mission with Russia – http://www.space.com/14975-eur

    The council’s decision will permit the ExoMars industrial team led by Thales Alenia Space of France and Italy to proceed with work on the 2016 mission under a full development contract.

    Industrial work up to now had been funded in a series of small tranches as ESA governments reviewed their options following NASA’s decision earlier this year to withdraw from the ExoMars project.

    The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter, along with an Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module (EDM), form the first mission in the European-led ExoMars program.

    The Orbiter and EDM are scheduled to arrive at Mars in
    2016. This image shows the Orbiter and the EDM in cruise configuration.

    CREDIT: ESA

    http://i.space.com/images/i/15

  2. Excellent news.  It is essential that we explore the boundaries of our existence.  At some point it will be necessary that we terraform other planets to colonise, and this is progress towards that goal.  The population will continue to increase, and a number of adverse scenarios could affect our planet.  This seems to me a natural furtherance of our emergence from the water, a while ago.

  3.   Capt. Bloodeye – At some point it will be necessary that we terraform other planets to colonise, and this is progress towards that goal.

    Mars is too small too cold and not very suitable for terraforming, but bases would be possible.

    Continuing in the long line of visionary BIS projects, Project Boreas summarises the three year deliberations of a group of BIS members and non-members on a scientific base at the Martian north pole.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-n343...

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