Over 40 nations and around 20 international organisations, including ESA, have come together in Brussels for two days, today and tomorrow, to exchange views on policies related to international cooperation in space.
Entitled ‘Winning through cooperation: sharing the benefits of space’, the conference provides a forum for discussion between States capable of providing space technology – the supply side – and those willing to make use of it – the demand side. The conference was jointly organised by the European Commission and ESA in response to a perceived need to set up a platform for dialogue between the two sides. The conference is also being attended by a strong contingent of representatives of the European space industry, which has become a key player on worldwide commercial markets in satellite manufacture, launch services and satellite operations.
Attending the conference, ESA Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain stated: “The successful launch of Ariane 5 a few days ago (Saturday 12 February) brought us ‘back to the future’, boosting Europe’s guaranteed access to space. And this outstanding achievement comes only a month after the discovery of a new world through the spectacular descent of ESA’s science probe Huygens onto Titan. These are just two concrete examples of international cooperation: Ariane shows what several European states have been able to accomplish together in 30 years of cooperation within ESA, while Huygens - reaching Titan after a 7-year journey on board NASA’s Cassini mothership - can be listed among the flagships of the longstanding ESA/NASA cooperation, which also extends to many more spacefaring countries”.
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The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.
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