European space budget approved

2012-11-22 12:40
Science ministers from the 20 member states of the European Space Agency have approved a budget. (Nasa, AP)

Science ministers from the 20 member states of the European Space Agency have approved a budget. (Nasa, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

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

The budget includes fund 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 spokesperson 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.

Ministers also approved Europe's participation in Nasa's new Orion spacecraft, developing the service module that propels the capsule. Orion aims to travel farther than any human spacecraft has gone in more than 40 years.

"For the first time, ESA is developing a cruise vehicle together with Nasa," Bonacina said.

Most of the space agency's nearly €4bn annual budget comes from member states, and the rest from the European Commission. While ESA director general Jeans-Jacques Dordain had sought €12bn, he said that €10bn was a good target and in line with commitments in 2008.

Bonacina called the budget "a huge success" and "a good sign for the future".
Read more on:    space

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Amazing solar inventions!

Solar power is lighting up the world, and not just on rooftops anymore.



Prince George the green prince?
One man's $1 million vision for an eco Africa
China's air pollution at doomsday levels
Keep food fresher for longer

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

The full moon energy can be quite intense today as your emotions fight against reason. It is important to ground your ideas more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.