The European Space Agency (ESA) is Europe’s gateway to space. Its mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world.
ESA is an international organisation with 20 Member States. By coordinating the financial and intellectual resources of its members, it can undertake programmes and activities far beyond the scope of any single European country.
ESA's headquarters are in Paris which is where policies and programmes are decided. ESA also has sites in a number of European countries, each of which has different responsibilities:
- EAC, the European Astronauts Centre in Cologne, Germany;
- ESAC, the European Space Astronomy Centre, in Villanueva de la Canada, Madrid, Spain;
- ESOC, the European Space Operations Centre in Darmstadt, Germany;
- ESRIN, the ESA centre for Earth Observation, in Frascati, near Rome, Italy;
- ESTEC, the European Space Research and Technology Centre, Noordwijk, the Netherlands.
- ECSAT, the European Centre for Space Applications and Telecommunications, Harwell, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.
- ESA Redu Centre, Belgium.
ESA also has liaison offices in Belgium, USA and Russia; a launch base in French Guiana and ground/tracking stations in various parts of the world.
For more information please consult our website at http://www.esa.int