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Mandatory activities

The Czech Republic is bound by the ESA Convention to contribute to ESA’s mandatory activities in proportion to its GDP, which is currently at the level of 5.4 million EUR. These activities cover the scientific programme and the so called basic activities which include strategic studies and technology programmes, education, common technical facilities and ground infrastructures, and corporate activities. Through the mandatory contribution, the Czech Republic participates in a wide range of ESA scientific missions as well as technology development programmes. Amongst mandatory activities belong following programmes.

Technology Research Programme (TRP)

  • It is part of the basic activities of ESA and an essential tool of ESA for preparation of future programmes.

Objective:

  • To assess innovative/prospective technologies incorporating high development risks but also a high potential pay-off and to demonstrate their usefulness for space applications.

Description:

  • TRP does not concentrate on a specific technology domain and is open to all space related technologies.
  • By testing the feasibility of prospective technologies, the TRP gives Europe the ability to look ahead, plan and define future space missions and activities.
  • Long-term planning is inherently risky when it comes to space, but the TRP reduces the degree of risk by demonstrating the workability of a given technology long before a mission is based around it. 
  • Invitations to Tender (ITT) are issued continuously throughout the year on ESA’s EMITS website.
  • Programme is intended for all ESA member states.
  • It also includes Innovation Triangle Initiative (ITI).

Yearly budget:

46 mil. EUR with three years work plans and yearly procurement plans. Current cycle ends in 2010 and the next one will cover the period 2011-2013.
More information about this programme is here.  

Innovation Triangle Initiative (ITI)

  • It is a specific part of the Technology Research Programme that aims at the transfer of innovation technologies used outside of the space sector to the applications in ESA projects (though completely novel technologies are also welcome).

Objective:

  • To foster the introduction of breakthrough innovations and technologies in the space environment.
  • Its specific goal is to explore technologies or services for space applications, that are not currently being used or exploited in the context of space and have therefore the potential of being the seed for significant innovations.

The main characteristics of ITI are:

  • Continuously open Call for Ideas
  • Proposals are submitted online using templates published on the website https://iti.esa.int
  • Short “time to contract”
  • Three types of contract:
    • A – Proof of Concept: for inventors;
    • B – Demonstration of Feasibility and use: for developers;
    • C – Technology Adoption: for customers;
  • It is based on the concept that a close collaboration between three different types of entities (inventors, developers, customers) is an important factor for the rapid and successful introduction of technology innovations in industry.
  • Proposals are evaluated regularly 3-4 times per year.
  • A, B are for ESA member states, C is only for participating states which gave a support confirmation to an activity. A, B are for ESA member states, C is only for participating states which gave a support confirmation to an activity.  

Yearly budget:

  • 1,5 mil. EUR

More information about this programme is here.

Science Core Technology Programme - CTP

Objective:

  • It follows-up the Technology Research Programme and focuses on developing and demonstrating the maturity of critical technologies necessary for candidate scientific missions.

Description:

  • Space science missions are amongst the most challenging class of ESA activities.
  • The demonstration of the feasibility of these critical technologies is an essential prerequisite to enable implementation of the planned missions at an acceptable level of risk in terms of cost and schedule.
  • The mission development phase can then take the mature results of CTP activities and adapt them to specific mission requirements.
  • A typical space science mission might require a dozen or more critical technologies to be made ready in the course of a decade or so.
  • The work is planned in 3 or 4 year cycles and is regularly updated. Current work plan is for years 2008-2011.
  • Programme is intended only for ESA member states.

Yearly budget:

  • 10-11 mil. EUR

More information about this programme is here.

General Study Programme (GSP)

  • It interfaces in different ways with all of ESA programmes.

Objective:

  • To act as a “think-tank“, laying the groundwork for the ESA’s future activities.
  • To contribute to the formulation of the overall ESA strategy.

Description:

  • The feasibility studies undertaken by GSP give the ESA Member States and the scientific community the necessary information on which to base their decisions about the implementation of new programmes and missions and the future direction of space activities.
  • The GSP studies are selected from proposals submitted by ESA staff.
  • GSP activities also reflect the views and suggestions of Member States and industry gathered through workshops, visits and hearings.
  • The work is planned in 3 year cycles and is regularly updated. Current work plan is for years 2008-2011.

GSP consists of three domains:

  • Inspirational activities: Sciences (Earth-, Space-, Life- and Physical-) and Human and Robotic Exploration.
  • Utilitarian activities: developing space systems to support public services (meteorology, environment, disaster management, education, energy, agriculture, etc.) and commercial offerings (telecom, navigation and imagery) for the benefit of the society.
  • Basic activities: access to space, technology base, industrial capabilities, ground facilities, context analysis and new working methodologies.

Yearly budget:

  • 20 mil. EUR

More information about this programme is here.  

European Component Initiative - ECI

Objective:

  • To reduce in a sustainable manner the European dependence on non-European single sourced Electrical, Electronic and Electromechanical (EEE) components, particularly those that might become subject to export restrictions (e.g. ITAR or End User Certificate).

Description:

  • This initiative has started in 2004.
  • ECI is an open cooperative programme where ESA and national space agencies participate each and contribute to the programme objectives with their own funding.
  • The ECI type of activities is also addressed under the new optional program GSTP-5 – Element 2 “Building Blocks”.
  • Calls are continuously published via web system EMITS.
  • Currently there has been a second phase of the programme (2008-2010).
  • It is intended for all ESA member states.

Yearly budget:

  • 6,5 mil. EUR

More information about this programme is here

Czech Industry Incentive Scheme

  • According to the Agreement between ESA and the Czech Republic concerning the accession to the ESA Convention, 45% of the Czech mandatory contribution (amounting to €2.3 million at the economic conditions of 2009) was allocated to this special transitional ESA programme.

Objective:

  • The aim of this transitional programme is, in accordance to the ESA’s rules and procedures, to adapt the Czech Republic's industry, operators, scientific community and other actors to the ESA’s requirements preparing the Czech actors to become competitive and thereby achieving maximum return of the contributions (industrial return), as well as to efficiently engage in appropriate optional programmes of ESA.

Description:

  • It is an advisory body to the ESA Director General.
  • Its members were nominated by ESA and the Government of the Czech Republic.
  • The mandate of the Task Force is for 6 years and terminates at the end of the transition period (2009-2014).
  • It manages 45% of Czech contribution to the ESA mandatory activities.
  • It has a special competence, in particular the right to suggest to the ESA Director General necessary steps for achieving of its objectives.
  • Funding falls into the mandatory activities domain.

 


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