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NZ Space Agency joins international space group

New Zealand Space Agency has joined an international space coordination group. File photo.

The New Zealand Space Agency will become the 27th member of the International Space Exploration Coordination Group - ISECG, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment announced today.

The ISECG is a non-binding, technical coordination forum and includes all of the world’s major space agencies with each agency represented by its technical space exploration experts.

Membership provides the opportunity for member space agencies to share their space exploration objectives and interests with the goal of strengthening their individual space programmes and the collective international space exploration effort.

“We are very pleased to join the ISECG in this new era of space exploration,” says MBIE Deputy Secretary Labour, Science and Enterprise and Head of the New Zealand Space Agency, Paul Stocks. “ISECG membership will enable New Zealand to build international partnerships for participation in globally coordinated space exploration efforts. It will also provide opportunities for New Zealand’s space sector to participate in and benefit from these partnerships.

“We will leverage our membership to better connect our researchers to leading international institutions and collaboration opportunities.

“There is on-going space exploration research at universities and within the commercial space sector in New Zealand – for example, Rocket Lab’s planned scientific mission to Venus and the University of Canterbury’s research into materials that can be used to build habitats on Mars as well as its contributions to joint international spacecraft missions to investigate interstellar objects,” says Paul.

“We are pleased to welcome our new member from New Zealand. ISECG has continued to grow substantially over the last years,” says Space Exploration Planning, Coordination and Advanced Concepts at the Canadian Space Agency current chair of the ISECG and Director, Dr Christian Lange. “Space agencies consider the work of ISECG important to globally advance space exploration while supporting their own national priorities. We look forward to work with our new colleagues from New Zealand.”

Further information about the International Space Exploration Coordination Group can be found at https://www.globalspaceexploration.org/wordpress/.

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