Space Matters!


Space travel fascinates humanity like it hasn't for 50 years. And for good reason: in the coming years, astronauts will set foot on the moon for the first time in half a century, including the first Europeans.

Space provides the technological foundation of our modern lives. Everything from the apps on your phones to your daily weather forecast depends on it, not to mention our safety and security. And what we learn in space often serves us in unexpected ways on Earth. Take solar panels. Once developed for satellites, they are now a key pillar of the energy transition. 

Europe’s most popular space exhibition 

If you want to have your finger on the pulse of space travel, the ILA is the right place for you. ILA is Europe's most visited space exhibition. In 2024, the ILA Space Pavilion will continue to comprehensively present the many facets of space travel and has an attractive stage and conference program in store for its visitors that shows: Space technology makes our networked, digitalized and modern lives possible.

The global space community also meets in the Space Pavilion: ministries, agencies, science and space companies present their innovations and demonstrate how space technologies make life on earth better. On display include the climate satellites EarthCare and Sentinel-2C, as well as the new Ariane 6 launcher, all of which are scheduled to launch this year.

The ILA Space Pavilion also demonstrates the potential of New Space, the commercialization of space travel and its connection to the non-space segments of our economy. New Space stands for the successful interaction of innovative, established space companies and new business models, especially start-ups.

Satellites to protect and connect 

Whether mapping every star in our galaxy or observing planet Earth, satellites have been helping to answer big questions from space for more than 50 years. And Europe has played a major role in space technology. 

The German space industry in particular is a leader in the development, construction and operation of earth observation satellites. Earth observation from space is the only way global and long-term changes in the environment become apparent. If necessary, early countermeasures based on objective data can be taken. Global warming, the melting of the polar ice caps and the rise in sea levels are being analyzed more thoroughly, so that effective countermeasures can be developed.

For instance, the EU’s Copernicus programme’s earth observation satellites provide vast amounts of data which are at the forefront of monitoring deforestation, rising sea levels and greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere. They also play a critical role in monitoring forest fires.

New European satellite constellation 

European governments and EU institutions are increasingly looking to shore up the resilience of their space assets. Security and space are interconnected. That’s why the future European satellite constellation IRIS² is so crucial. IRIS² is the EU's new flagship space programme for a digital, resilient and safer Europe. It will provide the EU with ultra-secure communications and connectivity, including to areas that do not currently benefit from broadband Internet, as well as to Africa. The purpose of IRIS²: to ensure Europe can operate in a highly secure and interconnected environment.

Galileo is another key component of Europe’s space prowess. The world’s most accurate satellite navigation system is facing a growing number of security threats as well as the evolution of other systems. The focus is now on improving the accuracy of the Galileo constellation as well as the robustness and resilience of its signal even further, enhancing all of its services, such as smartphone and in-car navigation.

Whether launchers, satellites, start-ups or space travel – at the ILA you can experience the present and future of space travel up close.