Global Space Agenda: The Future of French Space Policy
As part of the Global Space Agenda series, the Human Space Exploration Initiative at the Center for Strategic and International Studies will host Jean-Jacques Tortoa, Space Attaché to the French Embassy and Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) Represntative in Washington to discuss the Future of French Space Policy.
The French National Space Agency Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES) is the world’s second largest national space agency, after NASA and is a pivotal player in European efforts in space. France has a long tradition of aerospace research and involvement, and with the successful 1965 launch of the Diamant A, France was the third nation, after the Soviet Union and United States to develop an indigenous launch vehicle capable of placing payloads into orbit. In February of this year, France’s Parliamentary Office for Scientific and Technological Assessment released a study of French space policy entitled “Space Policy: Daring or Decline – How to Make Europe a World Leader in the Space Domain” which featured 50 policy recommendations. These recommendations include human rating the Ariane 5launch vehicle, development of an autonomous European space transportation compatible with NASA and other, particularly Russian systems, and a 2018 Moon landing and return to Earth of a European crew using the European transportation system. The impact of these recommendations, particularly in light of the recent French Presidential elections, remains to be seen. Regardless of what specific events unfold in months to come, it is certain that this is a time of tremendous flux not just for French or even European space policy, but for all space-faring nations. The current Space Attaché to the French Embassy and CNES Washington Representative, Jean-Jacques Tortora will be addressing these new developments and will also introduce the incoming Space Attaché and CNES Representative in Washington as part of the CSIS Global Space Agenda.