N° 52–1998

Second element of International Space Station to be launched

01 December 1998

The second element of the new International Space Station is set to be launched on Thursday 3 December aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, less than two weeks after the first element was placed in orbit by a Russian Proton launcher from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan (on 20 November).

N° 51–1998

Europe joins in celebrations for space station lunch

20 November 1998

The first module for the new International Space Station was successfully launched this morning (20 November) aboard a Russian Proton rocket at 07:40 CET from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The rocket blasted off under overcast skies and strong winds, and disappeared behind the clouds within 40 seconds.

N° 50–1998

First element of International Space Station to be launched on 20 November

18 November 1998

The first component of the International Space Station is scheduled to be launched atop a Russian Proton launcher from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 11:40 local time (07:40 Central European Time) on Friday 20 November, kicking off a new era in the human exploration of space.

N° 49–1998

"Making dreams come true"

16 November 1998

Invitation to a press conference - Paris, 26 November 1998, 09h30

N° 48–1998

ESA's Spanish astronaut looking forward to space station

12 November 1998

ESA's first Spanish astronaut, Pedro Duque, "did a fantastic job in orbit and has a great future in the space programme", declared Curt Brown, the commander of the Space Shuttle Discovery which returned this past weekend from its STS-95 mission. Brown was speaking during a press conference on Sunday, the day after Discovery touched down at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

N° 47–1998

Mars Express wins unanimous support

05 November 1998

All fourteen national delegations in the European Space Agency's Science Programme Committee have backed the project to send a spacecraft to Mars in 2003. Support for Mars Express, as this exciting mission is called, is qualified by concern about the long-term budget of ESA's science programme. At its meeting in Paris on 2 and 3 November, the Science Programme Committee made its approval of the implementation of Mars Express conditional on sufficient funding for the science programme and no impact on previously approved projects.

N° 46–1998

Ariane 503/ARD : A successful complete European space mission

30 October 1998

Europe has moved a step closer to flying its own complete space missions with the highly successful flight of an automatic capsule, the Atmospheric Reentry Demonstrator (ARD).

N° 45–1998

ESA's first Spanish astronaut rides into orbit alongside space pioneer

29 October 1998

The Space Shuttle Discovery performed a perfect lift-off today (Thursday 29 October 1998), carrying ESA astronaut Pedro Duque among its international crew, which includes John Glenn, making his return to space 36 years after he became the first American to orbit the Earth.

N° 44–1998

First Spanish astronaut carries nation's dreams into space - and takes Europe a step into the future

28 October 1998

ESA astronaut Pedro Duque follows in the tradition of the great Spanish explorers of past centuries when he climbs aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery tomorrow, Thursday 29 October, for a historic flight into a new world.

N° 43–1998

ESA astronaut Gerhard Thiele from Germany assigned to his first flight

28 October 1998

The European Space Agency (ESA) and the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) are pleased to announce the assignment of Gerhard Thiele, as Mission Specialist, to the STS-99 flight. This Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (X-SAR/SRTM), dedicated to ecological mapping of the Earth's surface, is scheduled for September 1999.

N° 42–1998

Claudio Mastracci new ESA Director of Application Programmes

23 October 1998

At its 137th meeting held at the Agency's headquarters in Paris on 21 and 22 October the ESA Council appointed Mr Claudio Mastracci (Italy) Director of Application Programmes.

N° 41–1998

Mission accomplished for ESA's reentry capsule

21 October 1998

N° 40–1998

ARIANE-5 completes an outstandingly successful test flight

21 October 1998

Today Europe confirmed its lead in space transport systems for the 21st Century. Ariane-5, on its third qualification flight, left no doubts as to its ability to deliver payloads to geostationary transfer orbit.

N° 39–1998

Ariane 503 : Launch confirmed for october 21st, 1998

19 October 1998

On Friday 16 and Monday 19 October, the launch readiness review for Ariane 503 took place at the Guiana Space Centre, Europe's spaceport, in Kourou, French Guiana.

N° 38–1998

New astronaut joins European Space Agency's corps

19 October 1998

The Director General of ESA, Antonio Rodota, together with the Belgian Minister for Science Policy, Yvan Ylieff, announced Europe's newest astronaut, Frank De Winne, today at the opening of the Association of Space Explorers congress, a meeting of about 100 astronauts being held this week in Brussels, Belgium.

N° 37–1998

Ariane 503: launch put back 24 hours

15 October 1998

Hydrazine filling of the first tank in the attitude control system, on Wednesday 14 October at the Guiana Space Centre, took longer than expected, although the filling operation itself was completed.

N° 36–1998

Antarctica is not shrinking

15 October 1998

Antarctica is not shrinking, the European Space Agency ESA reveals today. This result of the ERS (European Remote Sensing) satellites is reported 16 October 1998 by an international team of scientists in the leading American magazine, SCIENCE (See note). But the same investigation provides evidence that one part of West Antarctica may be rapidly losing its ice to the ocean.

N° 35–1998

European Space Agency (ESA) recruits new astronaut

05 October 1998

The Director General of ESA, Antonio Rodotà, together with the Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs, Annemarie Jorritsma, announced Europe's newest astronaut, André Kuipers, today at Space Expo in Noordwijk, The Netherlands.

N° 34–1998

Ariane 503 launch now scheduled for 20 October 1998

23 September 1998

On Monday, 21 September 1998 ESA and CNES held the Launcher Qualification Review in Evry, France. The review concluded that Ariane 503 launcher design justification files were progressing correctly. It also noted that modifications and testing at Kourou had been taken into account.

N° 33–1998

SOHO is pointing at the Sun again

17 September 1998

The SOHO solar spacecraft yesterday, 16 September 1998, obeyed commands that turned its face fully towards the Sun. For the first time since 25 June, when SOHO spun out of control and communication was lost, it points the right way. The SOHO flight operations team reported success in the maneuver, which is called attitude recovery, at 18:30 GMT (19:30 Central European Summer Time) on 16 September 1998.

N° 32–1998

Recovery of SOHO spacecraft continues successfully as Investigation Board releases final report

31 August 1998

Activities to bring the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft back to normal operating conditions continue with good results as the SOHO mission interruption joint ESA/NASA investigation board today releases its final report analysing the causes that led to interruption of the spacecraft's observations on 25 June this year.

N° 31–1998

Earth observation satellite lands at Farnborough International 98

19 August 1998

An impressive full-scale model of ESA's Earth observation satellite ENVISAT will be on display at Farnborough International from 4 to 13 September. With a length of 23m, a width of 12m and a height of over 9 m, the huge mock-up is a high-fidelity replica of the largest environmental satellite ever built, scheduled to be launched by an Ariane 5 vehicle in the year 2000.

N° 30–1998

SOHO: on the road to recovery

11 August 1998

Six days after receiving the first signal from the dormant SOHO Spacecraft, several blocks of telemetry data giving the spacecraft's on-board status were acquired late Saturday night, 8 August, at 23:15 hrs GMT. Further data acquisitions took place on Sunday 9 August and will continue in the following days.

N° 29–1998

SOHO maintains contact with ground control

06 August 1998

Having succeeded in receiving a response from the SOHO spacecraft late on Monday night (3 August 1998), controllers at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Greenbelt, Maryland, USA have continued to coax information from the spacecraft concerning its on-board status.

N° 28–1998

SOHO spacecraft contacted

04 August 1998

N° 27–1998

SOHO spacecraft located with ground-based radar

27 July 1998

Ground-based radio telescopes have been able to detect the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft and have found it slowly rotating near its original position in space, a potentially important step toward possible recovery of direct communications with the spacecraft.

N° 26–1998

Effort to recover SOHO spacecraft continue as investigation board focuses on most likely causes

16 July 1998

ESA (European Space Agency) and NASA engineers, reasoning that over the next two-to-three months the spacecraft's solar panels will increasingly face the Sun and generate power, are continuing their efforts to contact the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft.

N° 25–1998

First European payload for worldwide e-mail service launched

10 July 1998

ESA's LLMS (Little LEO Messaging System) payload was launched with the Russian Earth observation satellite "Resours-N4" today 10 July at 08:30 hrs CEST, from the Baikonour launch site in Kazakhstan on board a Zenit launcher.

N° 24–1998

Efforts to recover SOHO spacecraft continue as inquiry board co-chairs named

30 June 1998

Engineers are continuing efforts to reestablish contact with the ESA/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft using NASA's Deep Space Network (DSN). Contact with SOHO was lost on 25 June (European time) during maintenance operations.

N° 23–1998

SOHO spacecraft observations interrupted

26 June 1998

At 01:16 Paris time on 25 June 1998, during routine maintenance operations, ground controllers lost contact with the SOHO (Solar and Heliospheric Observatory) spacecraft and the satellite went into Emergency Sun Reacquisition (ESR) mode. The ESR mode is activated when an anomaly occurs and the spacecraft looses its orientation towards the Sun. When this happens, the spacecraft automatically tries to point itself towards the Sun again by firing its attitude control thrusters under the guidance of an on board Sun sensor.

N° 22–1998

Towards New Horizons

24 June 1998

ESA Council Meeting - Brussels on 23-24 June 1998

N° 21–1998

Ariane 503 - launch scheduled for mid-October 1998

15 June 1998

The W1 communications satellite developed for Eutelsat no longer being available, the W2 satellite, which was to have been carried as a commercial passenger on Ariane 503, will be launched by an Ariane-4 vehicle.

N° 20–1998

ESA Council meeting in Brussels, general information for the press

12 June 1998

The 136th ESA Council meeting at delegate level will take place in Brussels on 23 and 24 June 1998. It will be the first step leading to the Council meeting at ministerial level to be convened to define ESA's future activities.

N° 19–1998

Go-ahead for a European global navigation satellite system

18 June 1998

The European Space Agency (ESA), the European Community (EC) and the European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (EUROCONTROL) have taken an important step towards the development of GNSS, the global navigation satellite system for Europe.

N° 18–1998

International Space Station partners adjust target dates for first launches, revise other Station assembly launches

02 June 1998

Representatives of all nations involved in the International Space Station have agreed to officially target a November 1998 launch for the first station component and to revise launch target dates for the remainder of the 43-flight station assembly plan.

N° 17–1998

ESA and CERN strengthen their relationship

07 May 1998

Mr Antonio Rodotà, Director General of the European Space Agency (ESA) visited CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics on Thursday 7 May. He was welcomed by Prof. Chris Llewellyn Smith, the Director General of CERN, together with his designated successor, Prof. Luciano Maiani.

N° 16–1998

ESA at ILA in Berlin, 18-24 May 1998

24 April 1998

The International Aerospace Exhibition ILA'98 will be held in Berlin at Sch(nefeld Airport between 18 and 24 May 1998. More than 600 exhibitors from Europe and all over the world will be attending this international trade fair, including leading US aerospace companies and numerous representatives of the aerospace industry from Russia and Eastern Europe, as well as that from many Asian countries.

N° 15–1998

Shuttle mission will use ESA equipment to focus on "inner space"

15 April 1998

When the US Space Shuttle blasts off on 16 April on a mission to investigate the human nervous system, it will be carrying a unique rotating chair that is set to add a new dimension to the astronaut's already topsy turvy life in space.

N° 14–1998

Ariane-502 - results of detailed data analysis

08 April 1998

The results of Ariane 502 flight data analysis - a detailed evaluation covering all information gathered during the flight - were presented to the Launcher Qualification Board on 1 April. The analysis confirmed that the launcher performed well overall and did not reveal any anomalies that had not previously been identified.

N° 13–1998

INVITATION : Latest astronomical results from ISO: Press briefing in London

26 March 1998

The European Space Agency's Infrared Space Observatory, ISO, will complete its space operations any day now. On Tuesday 7th April 1998, at the Institute of Physics, 76 Portland Place, London W1, an international press briefing hosted by the UK Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC) will appraise ISO's accomplishments. In 28 busy months of observations, ISO has literally cast a new light on planets, stars and galaxies, by using infrared rays to probe cool and dusty parts of the Universe, and to detect the signatures of many materials present in space.

N° 12–1998

Europe to set up a single astronaut corps

26 March 1998

The European Space Agency (ESA) will set up a single European astronaut corps by merging existing national astronaut programmes with the ESA programme. The ESA Council approved this move at its meeting held in Paris yesterday.

N° 10–1998

With a view to the Council meeting at ministerial level: press briefing in Paris

16 March 1998

On Thursday 26 March, ESA Director General Antonio Rodotà, together with Science Programme Director Roger Bonnet, will meet the press at ESA Headquarters in Paris for a press breakfast starting at 8:30 hrs.

N° 9–1998

Taking Europe To The Moon

05 March 1998

In 1994 the European Space Agency (ESA) developed a phased Lunar programme leading to the long-term goal of creating an infrastructure for utilising and developing the Moon whilst preserving Lunar assets.

N° 8–1998

Present and future ESA/UK space activities: Press conference in London on 16 March.

03 March 1998

John Battle MP, UK Minister for Science, Energy and Industry, and ESA Director-General Antonio Rodota' will hold a joint press conference in London on current issues and future activities in space on Monday 16 March in London.

N° 6–1998

ESA and EUMETSAT give green light to start METOP*/EPS**

02 February 1998

At a meeting of participants on 12 December 1997, ESA Member States took a major step forward concerning the METOP Programme by declaring it started and, subject to an adequate commitment by EUMETSAT in January confirmed their intention to proceed with industrial activities. The relevant budgets were approved, but blocked pending the EUMETSAT decision.

N° 5–1998

XMM on show

30 January 1998

N° 4–1998

European ministers and officials to sign Space Station agreements in Washington

29 January 1998

Ministers, ambassadors and senior government officials of 11 ESA Member States (1)meet today their counterparts from the United States, Russia, Japan and Canada in Washington, DC, on Thursday 29 January to sign agreements on the International Space Station. The signing ceremony will be held at the U.S. Department of State at 16.00 local time (22.00 Central European Time).

N° 3–1998

SEA and SPACE: A New European Educational programme

23 January 1998

This spring, teachers across Europe will enjoy support for exciting, novel educational projects on astronomy, navigation and environmental observations. The largely web-based and highly interactive programme enables pupils to perform field experiments and astronomical observations and to obtain and process satellite images. A contest will take the best pupils for one week to Lisbon (Portugal), to Europe's spaceport in Kourou (French Guiana) where the European launcher lifts off or to ESO's Very Large Telescope at the Cerro Paranal Observatory in Chile, the largest optical telescope in the world.

N° 1–1998

1998: European Space at the forefront

05 January 1998

In 1998 ESA will be involved in a series of space activities both at European and international level. The following list highlights the main events lined up in the European space calendar for this year.