Has anyone ever drifted into space

Global cooperation could ease the tension in Asia

Space policy: Asia's space race must not turn into an arms race
Page 2/2:


Read on one side

Thanks to its strong dynamism, China is Asia's most important nation in the space competition. Before Japan, although space travel has been well established there for a long time. "The drive for China is the idea of ​​prestige: You want to show the population that you can do what other nations can do too." Due to China's ambitions, India in particular is now forced to enter the race.

It is difficult to judge whether a cooperation similar to Esa will ever develop in Asia, says Hulsroj. "Esa didn't come about overnight either." The beginnings were France, Germany and Italy, but it was found that the space business is expensive and can only be managed if you have a broader base. For this reason, two smaller organizations were founded in the mid-1960s, one for scientific research and another for rocket construction. It was not until ten years later, in 1975, that Esa was founded.

The situation in Asia is different from that in Europe in the 1970s

But the story of the origins of the Esa cannot be easily transferred to Asia: "The technology is cheaper today, so there is not the same motivation for the Asian countries as it was for the European countries back then." Things like telecommunications satellites would be easier to implement at the national level. "What cannot be achieved as a single nation is human exploration of space," says Hulsroj. The journey to Mars is a difficult task even for the established space nations.



Be there live online when our podcasts are created and meet your favorite hosts at the first ZEIT ONLINE podcast festival on Sunday, June 20, 2021.

With your registration you take note of the data protection regulations.

Many Thanks! We have sent you an email.

Check your mailbox and confirm the newsletter subscription.

Hulsroj sees an opportunity for Asia in precisely this problem: "The biggest question in space travel at the moment is whether a Mars mission can be coordinated globally." If Asia’s space nations were also involved, the fear of contact could be reduced and trust built. This is also important for Europe: "Our goal is to make space travel as efficient as possible. And you can only be really efficient if you work together in a coordinated manner."