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ESA’s first UK centre

ECSAT and Harwell personnel raise the flags. © ESA – all rights reserved

On 9 July Jan Woerner, ESA Director General, and Jo Johnson, UK Minister of State for Universities and Science, watched ESA Member States’ flags rise for the first time at the Agency’s first centre in the UK.

Two hundred space leaders from the public and private sectors came to ESA’s European Centre for Space Applications and Telecommunications (ECSAT) on the Harwell Campus in Oxfordshire, joined by the first ESA Director General, Roy Gibson, after whom the new building is named. They also celebrated the opening of the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory’s Space Development and Test Facility on the campus.

Tim Peake speaks to UK Minister Johnson and Jan Woerner. © ESA – all rights reserved

ESA’s first British astronaut, Tim Peake, took part in the celebrations via Skype from Star City in Russia, where he is training for his mission to the International Space Station in December.