UCL News


UCL in the News: UK looks to closer ties with Nasa

20 April 2007

UK scientists and engineers look set for more and bigger roles in US space agency (Nasa) missions.

It follows the signing of a document of understanding between the Americans and the British National Space Centre, which coordinates UK space efforts. …

The next few years are likely to see a rush of missions going to the Moon to test technologies to take to Mars. …

These include small robotic orbiters and landers, and even dart technology that would allow instruments to be shot into the lunar soil as a spacecraft flew overhead. …

"The agreement comes at a very good time," commented Dr Andrew Coates [UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory], a co-investigator on the current Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn.

"We're just in the process of planning the next great phase of missions. This is particularly true in Europe where we are busy writing proposals at the moment for missions that would run from 2015 to 2025.

"We would hope from this agreement that we would get to fly more instruments on more US missions - to the Moon, to Mars and beyond; as well as working with our usual partners within the European Space Agency," he told BBC News. …

BBC News Online