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December 17, 2018
UNOOSA and Airbus Issue Call for Interest for Utilizing Airbus Bartolomeo Platform

VIENNA – The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and Airbus Defence and Space have issued a Call for Interest (CFI) to United Nations Member States for an orbital opportunity utilizing the Airbus Bartolomeo external platform on the International Space Station (ISS).

The mission will offer institutions from participating Member States the opportunity to accommodate and operate a payload on the Airbus Bartolomeo external platform on the ISS. This mission aims to contribute to the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by building capacity and knowledge in space technologies at the national level. It will also promote international cooperation across nations in the peaceful uses of outer space. This initiative is part of the MoU signed by UNOOSA and Airbus in June 2018 at the margins of UNISPACE+50, the biggest space gathering of the 21st century under the auspices of the UN so far. Under the MoU, the two organizations aim to jointly build in-orbit capabilities in developed and developing countries, as well as expand know-how on the use of Earth observation data and their related benefits. The Bartolomeo mission is one of several opportunities offered through UNOOSA’s broader “Access to Space For All” initiative, which aims to enable all countries, especially emerging space nations, to capitalize on the benefits of space and space technologies.

UNOOSA Director, Simonetta Di Pippo, commented: “UNOOSA is proud to partner with Airbus, a leader in the aerospace sector, to provide this incredible opportunity for institutions from UN Member States to place a payload on the Airbus Bartolomeo external platform of the ISS. Through its Access to Space for All Initiative, UNOOSA is committed to expanding access to space, in particular for developing countries, and to close the divide between space-faring and non space-fairing nations. Space offers endless possibilities for research and technological innovation that can benefit humanity and help countries achieve the SDGs. This mission will foster the development of know-how in the practical applications of space technologies at the national level, with potentially enormous positive spill over effects. Through this experience, participants will learn more on how to leverage the benefits of space to tackle national development challenges”.

“We are proud to cooperate with UNOOSA. Bartolomeo is a highly versatile platform on the ISS, allowing it to implement a large variety of missions in space quickly and in a cost-efficient way. Application areas include remote sensing, Atmospheric Research, In-orbit testing of space equipment or In-space Manufacturing,” said Akos Hegyi, Head of ISS Services at Airbus.

Applications for the Bartolomeo mission are open from 6 December 2018 to 31 January 2019. Institutions from developing countries are particularly encouraged to apply.

The CFI can be found on UNOOSA’s website:

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