The European Space Agency is preparing for a large-scale meeting that should take place in Seville, Spain, during the next week. Several research ministers of the member-states will participate in the event.
It is expected that the politicians will agree to grant extensive funding for the research and manufacturing of devices and technologies that will play an essential role in the upcoming US-led Artemis project, which seeks to bring astronauts back on the surface of the moon.
One of the important devices is two propulsion-cum-service modules that will help the Orion crew capsules to travel through space. The spacecraft are included in the Artemis 3 and 4 missions, scheduled for launch after 2024.
The European Space Agency Is Committed To Moon Exploration
The ministers will also discuss and approve development work for the international space station, known as Gateway. ESA wants to offer a habitation module, and a secondary multi-purpose unit that could facilitate access, refueling, and high-data speed communications. This unit, known as Esprit, will also offer large windows that allow astronauts to monitor robotic operations that take place outside of the station and to observe the Moon and Earth.
ESA’s ambitions are quite large as the large autonomous freighter could be constructed and used to deliver supplies to the astronauts who work on the moon. It would be launched towards the end of the next decade, but engineers and researchers will have to spend a significant amount of time on development and tests. It could also bring valuable samples back to earth.
Almost €2 billion will be requested at the council, up by 25% in comparison to the amount that was required at the last primary board that took place in Lucerne in 2016. A part of the money will be spent on enhancing some of the ESA infrastructures. The Columbus science lab will be upgraded soon, and the ESA hopes that the new features and technologies will attract new users. Several small-scale objectives require extra funding.