Europe Space Strategy Review
Space matters for Europe. Europe — the Member States, the European Space Agency (ESA), the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT) and the EU — has achieved many successes in space with breakthrough technologies and exploration missions, such as ESA's Rosetta mission, unique Earth observation and meteorology capabilities, such as Meteosat, and world-leading commercial telecommunications and launch systems with the Ariane family and Vega.
Europe represents today the second largest public space budget in the world1 with programmes and facilities spanning different European countries. Between 2014-2020, the EU alone will invest over EUR 12 billion in space activities. It owns worldclass space systems with Copernicus 2 for Earth observation, EGNOS3 and Galileo4 for satellite navigation and geo-positioning. With 18 satellites currently in orbit and over 30 planned in the next 10-15 years, the EU is the largest institutional customer for launch services in Europe. Space technologies, data and services have become indispensable in the daily lives of European citizens: when using mobile phones and car navigation systems, watching satellite TV or withdrawing cash. Satellites provide immediate information when disasters, such as earthquakes, forest fires or floods strike, allowing emergency and rescue teams to better coordinate their efforts.
Agriculture benefits from improved land use. Transportation and energy infrastructure is safer and can be more efficiently managed thanks to satellite technologies. Global challenges due to growing populations, increased demand for resources and climate change require information about our planet which space based solution can provide more easily. Space technologies, data and services can support numerous EU policies and key political priorities, including the competitiveness of our economy, migration, climate change, the Digital Single Market and sustainable management of natural resources. Space is also of strategic importance for Europe. It reinforces Europe’s role as a stronger global player and is an asset for its security and defence.
Space policy can help boost jobs, growth and investments in Europe. Investing in space pushes the boundaries of science and research. Europe has a world-class space sector, with a strong satellite manufacturing industry, which captures around 33 % of the open world markets, and a dynamic downstream services sector with a large number of SMEs. The European space economy, including manufacturing and services, employs over 230 000 professionals and its value was estimated at EUR 46-54 billion in 2014, representing around 21% of the value of the global space sector5 . The overall international space context is changing fast: competition is increasing; new entrants are bringing challenges and new ambitions in space; space activities are becoming increasingly commercial with greater private sector involvement; and major technological shifts are disrupting traditional industrial and business models in the sector, reducing the cost of accessing and using space. The combination of space data with digital technologies and other sources of data open up many business opportunities for all Member States.
1 Consolidated space budget (Member States, EU, ESA and EUMETSAT) estimated at EUR 7 billion in 2015.
2 European Earth Observation Programme.
3 European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service, which augments the GPS signals over Europe.
4 European Global Navigation Satellite System, similar to the GPS.
5 Socioeconomic impacts from space activities in the EU in 2015 and beyond, PwC study, June 2016.
Europe must work together to promote its position as a leader in space, increase its share on the world space markets, and seize the benefits and opportunities offered by space. Building on Article 189 of the Treaty (TFEU), the Commission is therefore proposing a new Space strategy for Europe focused on four strategic goals.
The potential of space solutions has not yet been fully exploited, and nor have the wider possibilities offered by space data. The space sector needs to be better connected to other policies and economic areas at EU level and in all Member States. The potential of the EU space programmes Copernicus, EGNOS and Galileo must be better exploited. The Commission’s aim is to optimise the benefits that space brings to society and the wider EU economy. Achieving this means boosting demand among public and private users, facilitating access to and use of space data, and stimulating the development and use of innovative downstream applications. It also means ensuring the continuity and user-driven development of EU space programmes.
Encouraging the uptake of space services and data Data and services derived from space systems, including satellite images, geo-positioning information and satellite communications, already contribute to a number of public policies and economic sectors: from environmental protection to transport safety, precision farming, control of fishery stocks, monitoring of shipping routes and detection of oil spills, to urban and regional planning. The potential areas of application are huge and they are not yet fully exploited. The Commission will thus encourage the use of space services, data and applications in EU policies whenever they provide effective solutions. It will make sure that EU legislation is supportive of their uptake and will undertake regular reviews to identify barriers and new opportunities, including administrative simplifications.
The Commission will take concrete measures, including regulatory ones where justified and beneficial6 , to introduce Galileo in specific markets or areas, such as mobile phones, European critical infrastructure and aviation. New chipsets and receivers put on the European market should be Galileo and EGNOS compatible. To support the effort of industry the Commission will put in place a voluntary labelling and certification scheme. In the longer term, the Commission will encourage the uptake of space solutions through standardisation measures and roadmaps, and by integrating space into future strategies addressing, for example, autonomous and connected cars, railways, aviation and unmanned aerial vehicles (drones).
The Commission will release a European radio navigation plan to facilitate the introduction of global navigation satellite system applications in sectoral policies. This effort should be supported by accompanying measures at national and regional level. The Commission, together with the GSA7 and others, will organise awareness-raising campaigns, set up support networks (for example, Copernicus Relays and the Copernicus Academy) and 6 Possible legislative proposals will be subject to Commission better regulation requirements, in line with Commission’s Better Regulation Guidelines, SWD(2015) 111. 7 The European Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) Agency (GSA) is an EU agency responsible for the exploitation of EGNOS and Galileo. 4 provide technical support in using innovative and cross-border procurement for space solutions. Copernicus is one of the leading providers of Earth observation data. However, technical barriers currently prevent users from fully exploiting the data and information Copernicus delivers.
Therefore, the Commission will improve access to and exploitation of space data enabling their cross-fertilisation with other sources of data, facilitating the integration with digital research infrastructures, in complementarity with the European cloud initiative. More specifically, the Commission will strengthen the dissemination of Earth observation data generated by Copernicus. It will launch several enabling platform services offering access to additional datasets and online processing capabilities in which European industry will take a leading role. These measures will open up new business opportunities for European industry, including SMEs and start-ups, and will allow research institutions, public authorities and companies to develop and benefit from space solutions. As space data often need to be exploited jointly with non-space data to deliver its full potential for end users, the Commission will pay particular attention to the interoperability of datasets, building on the INSPIRE Directive8 and the European Interoperability Framework. Stronger links with the commercial downstream sector are essential to develop tailor-made applications, reach out to new users and connect space with other sectors.
The Commission will therefore put in place framework conditions to foster these links. It will define clear limits between the free Copernicus core information services and commercial downstream applications. It will also introduce an ‘industry test’ to check the ability of downstream suppliers to provide a reliable and affordable service. Space and satellite communications can also improve connectivity for Europe’s digital society and economy. Satellites can provide cost-effective solutions in particular to connect assets and people in remote and offshore areas, or as part of the future 5G networks, where numerous applications and services using space data will also require uninterrupted connectivity. The Commission will work with Member States to promote long-term cooperative frameworks that encourage the interworking of satellite and terrestrial technologies and bring together the respective business communities. Main actions:
The Commission will: - promote the uptake of Copernicus, EGNOS and Galileo solutions in EU policies where justified and beneficial, including in the short term, with measures introducing the use of Galileo for mobile phones, and critical infrastructure using time synchronisation. - facilitate the use of Copernicus data and information by strengthening data dissemination and setting up platform services, promoting interfaces with non-space data and services. - stimulate the development of space applications with a greater involvement of new actors from different domains. - together with Member States and industry, promote the efficient and demand-driven use of satellite communications, so as to foster ubiquitous connectivity in all Member States. 8 Directive 2007/2/EC establishing an Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the European Community, OJ L 108, 25.4.2007, p.1. 5 1.2. Advancing the EU space programmes and meeting new user needs The private sector will only use and invest in space solutions if users and businesses are confident that services and data provided by Copernicus, EGNOS and Galileo will continue in the future.
The Commission therefore confirms its commitment to the stability of the EU space programmes and to strengthening the systems’ competitive advantages, through features such as authentication and high accuracy for Galileo. In a changing environment and fastevolving market, these systems must continue to develop to ensure that they deliver state-ofthe-art services with greater efficiency and robustness. The Commission will implement the third generation of EGNOS to bring improvements and cover additional sectors such as maritime. This will make EGNOS more attractive and help it become a key part of radio navigation in Europe. The Commission’s aim is to reinforce the second generation of Galileo and Copernicus as a major reference at global level. This will require the continuous improvement of current services and infrastructure. Additional services will be considered to meet emerging needs in specific priority areas, including (i) climate change and sustainable development, to monitor CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions, land use and forestry, and changes in the Arctic9 with Copernicus; and (ii) security and defence to improve the EU's capacity to respond to evolving challenges related to border controls and maritime surveillance with Copernicus and Galileo/EGNOS. This expansion will take account of new technological developments in the sector, the need to ensure adequate level of security of the infrastructure and services, the availability of different data sources and the long-term capacity of the private sector to deliver appropriate solutions.
The Commission will upgrade user consultation processes and set up dedicated user platforms to ensure that developments are driven by user needs, including for security-related requirements. Where this may be more efficient and would leverage available funding, and taking due account of past experiences, the Commission will explore alternative business models (public-public, public-private partnerships or buying services). Main actions: The Commission will: - remain committed to the stability of the EU space programmes and prepare the new generations, on a user-driven basis, to continue delivering state-of-the-art services. To this end, the Commission will explore alternative business models and take account of technological progress. - address emerging needs related, in particular, to climate change/sustainable development and security and defence.
The European space industry is facing tougher global competition. Security of supply and industry’s ability to export its products are impacted by high dependence on non-European critical components and technologies. Innovative industrial processes are revolutionising the sector. Space activities are increasingly open to private investment in the areas of satellite communications, Earth observation and even launchers.
Space is now part of a global value chain that increasingly attracts new companies and entrepreneurs, so-called 'New Space', 9 In line with the integrated European Union policy for the Arctic (JOIN(2016) 21 final). 6 which are pushing the traditional boundaries in the space sector. This opens up new opportunities to develop innovative products, services and processes which can benefit industry in all Member States, creating new capacities and adding value in and outside the space sector. Europe needs to maintain and further strengthen its world-class capacity to conceive, develop, launch, operate and exploit space systems.
To ensure this, the Commission will support the competitiveness of the whole supply chain and actors from industry to research organisations. It will also foster the emergence of an entrepreneurial ecosystem, opening up new sources of financing, creating new business opportunities, and making sure this will benefit businesses in all Member States. 2.1. Supporting research and innovation and development of skills Space research activities at EU level should address all segments of the space industrial value chain in a balanced way and promote technology-transfer/cross-fertilisation with other, nonspace sectors. They should facilitate access to space data for research and innovation programmes in order to create conditions for major research breakthroughs and reach out to numerous market segments. In the context of EU research programmes, the Commission will give priority to action addressing the vulnerability of European supply chains by supporting the development of critical space components, systems and technologies associated with technological nondependence.
It will support long-term R&D needs, including breakthrough disruptive technologies, low-cost and alternative access to space, and in-orbit servicing. It will also support the development of new industrial processes and production tools, and improve support to technological maturity, including in-orbit demonstration and validation activities, to reduce time to market. The Commission will also seek to ensure that future research activities better integrate space research with other policy areas addressing global and societal challenges. It will encourage horizontal synergies and multidisciplinary approaches that allow the cross-fertilisation of ideas and spinning-in/off of space and non-space technologies. This will be done in collaboration with existing initiatives, such as the European technology platforms and joint technology initiatives. Linking space research more closely with basic research will support the exploitation of scientific space data from European space science and exploration missions and the development of scientific instrumentation. It will also foster cooperation between scientific, engineering and industrial teams.
In addition, the Commission will organise regular dialogues with industry and other innovation actors, including the research community and users of applications and services, to better address their competitiveness needs. The Commission will facilitate the use of intellectual property rights owned by the EU, including patents and copyrights, to stimulate innovation and economic growth. With the European Structural Investment Funds the Commission will support research and innovation in Member States and regions which have identified space as a priority in their smart specialisation strategies and will facilitate cross-border cooperation among their research and innovation actors.
As part of the New Skills Agenda for Europe, the Commission will launch a dedicated sector skills alliance for space/Earth observation gathering key stakeholders from industry, research, universities and public authorities to tackle new skills requirements in the sector. The Commission will foster closer cooperation with the European Institute of Innovation and Technology and its knowledge and innovation communities and will strengthen activities and projects to promote space in education and sciences. Main actions: The Commission will: - step up its efforts to support space R&D activities, in cooperation with Member States and ESA, and review its strategic approach to boosting the competitiveness of the European space sector. - strengthen the use of innovative procurement schemes to stimulate the demand-side of innovation10 and explore new approaches to leverage private sector investments and partnerships with industry11 - together with Member States and ESA, promote the use of common technology roadmaps12 to ensure greater complementarity of R&D projects. - include space/Earth observation in the blueprint for sectoral cooperation on skills addressing new skills requirements in the sector. 2.2. Fostering entrepreneurship and new business opportunities Enabling measures and capacity building in all Member States and at European level are needed to create the right ecosystem and a favourable regulatory and business environment that incentivises the private sector to be more risk-prone and encourages businesses to develop innovative products and services.
The Commission will support European space entrepreneurs in starting and scaling up ac