ESA inherited a number of satellite projects from ESRO and has since expanded into nearly all the main satellite applications. Astronomical
ESA astronauts Pedro Duque (Spanish, seated left) and Paolo Nespoli (Italian, seated right) train for flights aboard the ISS. Training at the European Astronaut Centre In Cologne is supplemented with training at Houston and the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre.
An upgraded version of Ariane 5 waits on the pad at Kourou prior to a (failed) launch in December 2002. The ECA variant has the capacity to take pay loads of up to 10,500kg (23,1 OOlb) into geostationary transfer orbit.
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