. 24/7 Space News .
Europe needs a crewed space vehicle, astronauts say
by Paul Brinkmann
Washington DC (UPI) Feb 16, 2021

Europe needs its own crewed spaceship to build its space industry and talent, astronauts who gathered in France said in an official manifesto Wednesday.

Dozens of astronauts endorsed the statement that "we need to be able to count on our own autonomous access to space for humans," according to the manifesto presented at the 2022 European Space Summit in Toulouse.

It calls on European officials to fund such a new space endeavor.

Europe has seven active-duty astronauts and has launched many more, but only on U.S. space shuttles, SpaceX Dragon capsules and Russian Soyuz capsules.

Europe itself uses Ariane 5 rockets to launch satellites but has no crewed vehicle.

There are several reasons the call for a new spacecraft is timely now, Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano told UPI.

"If you look around in Europe right now, there is a vibrancy, a specific frequency of energy that you can feel when you walk into a room to talk about space," Parmitano said.

He said the European Space Agency's selection of new astronauts this year prompted many in the agency to think about the future.

Two European astronauts have recently launched to space on a SpaceX mission, Matthias Maurer and Thomas Pesquet, while a third, Samantha Cristoforetti, plans to launch with SpaceX on April 15.

"I would like to be able to tell the new class of astronauts, yes, there is a chance for them to fly into space with a European rocket and operate in space with other Europeans and other international partners and give a demonstration of what we are capable of doing," Parmitano said.

The European space program also was energized by the flawless performance of the Ariane 5 rocket in launching the James Webb Space Telescope in December.

The rocket performed so well, as Europe's contribution to the mission, that the telescope itself had to use minimal fuel to reach its destination. That means it might last twice as long as its original mission profile, according to NASA.

"I believe that it was the time for us astronauts to take a stand and to give direction about ... where we see our role now," Parmitano said.

In a video on Twitter, Cristoforetti added another reason for such a spacecraft, "Europe needs new unifying dreams to keep its talent in Europe."

And finally, Parmitano said costs for building spacecraft have come down steadily since Europe canceled a plan to build a small version of the space shuttle in the 1990s.

"This can be done for billions of dollars now, instead of hundreds of billions," he said.

History and geopolitics also may underlie the call for an independent European spaceship, Amy Foster, a professor of space history at the University of Central Florida, said in an interview.

"It certainly doesn't surprise me, given the tensions with Russia over Ukraine, and the rise of the private space industry around the world," Foster said. "Europe has had to play third wheel in terms of their crewed launches, along with Japan, so maybe it does make sense that this is the right time to stretch their own legs."

She noted that NASA plans to retire the International Space Station in 2030 and move to commercial space stations while planning crewed trips to the moon and Mars.

"I can see why Europe would want to plan for their own crewed presence in space. Cooperation in space between nations, like Russia and the U.S., has always been very challenging," Foster said.

Related Links
The latest information about the Commercial Satellite Industry

Thanks for being there;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5+ Billed Monthly

paypal only
SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal

UK candidates make it through to next round of European Space Agency's astronaut call
London, UK (SPX) Feb 11, 2022
The window to apply for ESA's astronaut vacancy opened on 31 March 2021 and closed 18 June. This is the first call for new astronauts in over 10 years and the first-time candidates with a physical disability had been invited to apply. Of the 22,523 valid astronaut applications received by ESA, 2,000 of these were from the UK. Following a comprehensive screening phase, 1,361 people were invited to phase two of ESA's astronaut selection. This is a full day of psychological performance testing ... read more

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Coca-Cola launching new Starlight drink 'inspired by space'

Blue Origin to build more rockets amid expectations to tourist flights

How to design a sail that won't tear or melt on an interstellar voyage

NASA offers up to $200M to help push new technologies to market

Orbex prepares for rocket launch 'dress rehearsals' as launchpad arrives at test site

Vaya Space completes first suborbital test flight

SpaceX plans new private spaceflight missions, first private spacewalk

US billionaire announces three more ambitious SpaceX flights

NASA's Perseverance celebrates first year on Mars by learning to run

Valentine's Day on Mars as Curiosity marks Sol 3387

Testing rocks on Earth to help NASA's Perseverance work on Mars

Students with Perseverance receive messages from Mars

China to make 6 human spaceflights, rocket's maiden flight in 2022: blue book

China welcomes cooperation on space endeavors

China Focus: China to explore lunar polar regions, mulling human landing: white paper

China to boost satellite services, space technology application: white paper

Europe needs a crewed space vehicle, astronauts say

Space sector set to create new jobs in Highland and Moray

End of Lockheed bid for Aerojet Rocketdyne may impact space, missile markets

UK candidates make it through to next round of European Space Agency's astronaut call

New Space Station experiments study flames in space

NRAO and Optisys Partner Up to Produce 3D Devices for Radio Astronomy

New laser station lights the way to debris reduction

Latecoere strengthens its space activities through three cooperations with Airbus

New planet detected around star closest to the Sun

Studying the next interstellar interloper with Webb

Researchers find evidence for existence of uneven circumstellar matter based on TESS data

Can a planet have a mind of its own?

New Horizons team puts names to the places on Arrokoth

NASA Telescope Spots Highest-Energy Light Ever Detected From Jupiter

Juno and Hubble data reveal electromagnetic 'tug-of-war' lights up Jupiter's upper atmosphere

Oxygen ions in Jupiter's innermost radiation belts

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2024 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) Statement Our advertisers use various cookies and the like to deliver the best ad banner available at one time. All network advertising suppliers have GDPR policies (Legitimate Interest) that conform with EU regulations for data collection. By using our websites you consent to cookie based advertising. If you do not agree with this then you must stop using the websites from May 25, 2018. Privacy Statement. Additional information can be found here at About Us.