PARIS, 29 May 2015 (ESA PR) — After the 50th anniversary of the European space cooperation in 2014, we now celebrate 40 years since the signing of the Convention for the creation of a single European Space Agency in May 1975.
The idea of building an independent space capability in Europe dated back to the early 1960s when six European countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom) formed the European Launcher Development Organisation (ELDO) to develop a heavy launcher, later called ‘Europa’.
Those same countries, plus Denmark, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland, established the European Space Research Organisation (ESRO) soon after, to undertake mainly scientific satellite programmes. Signed in 1962, their Conventions entered into force in 1964.
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