Dear ARTES community
For all of us, 2016 has been a year of unexpected and often disruptive developments. It is a tribute to everyone involved that we nonetheless end the year on a high, in fact with our Member States making their highest ever investment in the ARTES programme. The new subscriptions made at the Council at Ministerial Level in Lucerne total over €1.2 billion. This is a great endorsement of the value that governments and industry see in ARTES, in terms of boosting innovation, support for European competitiveness and overall economic impact.
Core Competitiveness has become an increasingly popular programme, whilst IAP, our main applications programme, was over-subscribed by 40 per cent. Both of these elements were enhanced during the year to make them more efficient. Their respective teams also worked hard to assess and communicate their impact, which helped Member States to judge their value. Obviously we are very pleased about this and we aim to make this kind of analysis progressively more thorough.
The Iris programme, which is developing the satellite communications component of Europe’s future Air Traffic Management system, proved particularly attractive. This tells us a lot about the focus of industry and Member States on activities with tangible benefits that everyone can recognise. Its importance was emphasised in the Memorandum of Cooperation signed in October between ESA and the Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) Joint Undertaking.
Of course we have also been busy with our many other programme elements, in particular complementing and moving forward the NEOSAT, ELECTRA and ICE programmes, whilst also including some brand new ones like Pioneer, ScyLight and ESA’s Govsatcom Precursor.
Here are a few of the highlights from the past year:
As usual we also participated in some very significant events:
Tempting though it might be, we can't rest on our laurels. The satellite communications market is evolving at an increasing rate, with Very High Throughput Satellites, new launch systems and the forthcoming Megaconstellations all starting to cause fundamental changes within the industry, including not only technological but also operational, financial and industrial aspects.
In the New Year we will continue to help European space industries respond to this new era, by increasing their competitiveness and their rate of innovation. From all of us at the Telecoms and Integrated Applications Directorate, thank you for rising to the challenges of a very demanding year. We wish you the very best for 2017 and we hope that it will bring even greater success.
Telecommunications and Integrated Applications (TIA)
European Space Agency