POLITICS & INSTITUTIONS - WORLD

François Bausch

Defence minister meets US Space Force



François Bausch, pictured here with Lieutenant General Mike Guetlein, Commander of US Space Force Space Systems Command, visited California to discuss future space-related projects in the defence and communication sectors.  Photo: Ministry of Defence

François Bausch, pictured here with Lieutenant General Mike Guetlein, Commander of US Space Force Space Systems Command, visited California to discuss future space-related projects in the defence and communication sectors.  Photo: Ministry of Defence

Vice-president and defence minister François Bausch (déi Gréng) met with the U.S. Space Force and space-related businesses in California during a visit between 19 and 22 November.

The diplomatic trip was planned around meetings with the US Space Force and various companies involved in the manufacturing and launching of satellites used by the Luxembourg-based satellite networker SES.

“It is essential that we focus all our efforts on ensuring the peaceful use of space and I am convinced that international cooperation is the key to ensuring freedom of action in this area,” Bausch said following discussions on defence collaboration projects--with a focus on space--between the United States and Luxembourg.

Other topics on the agenda were potential common projects around space situational awareness and satellite communication.

Luxembourg’s SES already has strong ties with the US in terms of space business, as its most recently launched satellite SES-17 covers the Americas, the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean connectivity market.

Bausch also visited El Segundo, where SES’s future o3b mPower satellites are built, as well as SpaceX who have launched both SES satellites and the GOVSAT-1, a jointed venue between the government and SES.

In June of this year, Luxembourg, as a part of its growing interest in space and dedicated spending budget, invested €6.7m to support Nato in developing its situational awareness capabilities, as the orbit around Earth is becoming more crowded and debris and other objects are harder to detect.

In a previous statement in July, Bausch had revealed that the US is the “first choice partner for Luxembourg” when it came to space.