Has anyone ever drifted into space
Global cooperation could ease the tension in Asia
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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.Newsletter
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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."
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