European Space Agency

Future Preparation Overview


The ARTES Future Preparation element focuses on: defining market opportunities; regulatory barriers; standards; future frequency spectrum needs; as well as economic and business issues relating to the development of future satellite telecommunications concepts and technologies to assist European and Canadian industry in the development of innovative telecommunication services.

This is accomplished by pursuing the following key objectives:

  • To perform mission, system, general configuration studies and other activities to prepare and continuously update the medium and long term programme of ESA in the field of telecommunications;
  • To define the technology developments necessary for the execution of the telecommunication programme and their timing and provide these requirements as inputs for the technology programmes definition to be undertaken in other elements of ARTES.

The range of activities covered by Future Preparation include market surveys and economic analysis relating to future telecommunications and data relay system missions, definition of mission and in-orbit testing requirements, identification of technology gaps and new programmes, contribution to international frequency spectrum issues and standards development, support to European Commission to define a role that satellites can play in building Europe’s future telecommunications institutional infrastructure and development of system concepts through modelling and simulation tools.


Activities within Future Preparation are fully funded by ESA.

Who can participate?

Activities under Future Preparation are open to industry of all Member States participating in ARTES;
Participating Member States include:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • The Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada

Delegation authorisation

Authorisation from a participating Member State’s national delegate is not a pre-requisite for participation in future preparation.


Future Preparation activities are implemented on the basis of a Rolling Work Plan. The Work Plan is based on the results of the ARTES Call for Ideas that is continuously open to participating Member States’ satellite industries, satellite operators, service providers, universities and research centres. Invitations To Tender for the activities of the Work Plan are generally issued in open competition.