The European Commission, European Space Agency and the European Defence Agency are to set up a government-industry task force to identify technologies for development that will bring about a more independent European spaceflight capability.

The task force follows an industry, government "Critical Space Technologies" workshop held this month in Brussels. The technologies will be chosen to bring about a greater European independence in satellite and rocket development, production and use. The workshop involved more than 100 stakeholders from more than European 20 countries, representing the EC, ESA, EDA, those organisations' respective member states, national agencies and the continent's space industry.

"The joint effort will foster the competitiveness of the European space industry on the world market. The aim is to ensure that Europe can rely on a technical and industrial capacity for accessing space, in particular in the area of the manufacturing of satellites and launchers," says the ESA.

Europe is having to use export-controlled US components for its Galileo satellite navigation system while Thales Alenia Space has a telecommunications satellite product that does not use restricted US technology.

Source: Flight International