King Philippe visiting the Redu space center: “Belgium is one of the main contributors”

This morning, King Philippe was welcomed by officials of the European Space Agency at the center of Redu. A brief but significant visit, which highlights Belgium’s crucial role in European space exploration.

This morning, King Philippe was welcomed by officials of the European Space Agency (ESA) at the Redu center. ESA Director General Joseph Aschbacher personally welcomed the sovereign, saying: “I welcome His Majesty King Philippe of Belgium“.

Joseph Aschbacher underlined the importance of this visit: “This is something very important for us, for Belgium, but also for Europe. This shows that space fascinates. Belgium is a very powerful space nation. It is a great partner for ESA.

The center will help “protect populations”

This whirlwind visit, which lasted only an hour and a half, began with a presentation of the control center. From this center, specialists receive and process millions of data from satellites installed around the world.

Thomas Dermine, Federal Secretary of State for Space Policy, explained: “In the event of flooding, being able to have better images to guide our rescuers and protect populations. In the event of demonstrations or attacks, it is possible to anticipate crowd movements and be able to deploy law enforcement or rescue services as efficiently as possible.

Redu, a center in the making

Redu is currently the smallest of ESA’s seven operational centers, but its managers aim to make it a reference site in terms of cybersecurity. During his visit, the King was able to observe a huge construction site in progress. Ultimately, this site will house one of the largest space operations centers in Europe.

At the level of European space agencies, Belgium is one of the main contributors. It stimulates many important programs in terms of Earth observation and scientific exploration. It is a driving country, we are counting on Belgium for the stages to come” said Pascal Legai, security advisor at ESA.

The visit ended with a souvenir photo, immortalizing this symbolic moment for Belgium and Europe.

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