Out of this world! Brno space company to take part in asteroid defence mission

OHB Czechspace is working with the European Space Agency (ESA) on the project called 'Hera'.

Tom Lane

Written by Tom Lane Published on 11.12.2020 06:17:00 (updated on 11.12.2020) Reading time: 2 minutes

A Czech space company has confirmed their involvement in a large project looking at protecting the planet from asteroids.

OHB Czechspace will work with the European Space Agency (ESA) on the project called “Hera.”

They confirmed the news on LinkedIn in a post saying:

“OHB Czechspace s.r.o. located in Brno, Czech Republic, has now been awarded with a contract by the Prime Contractor OHB System AG to participate in the defense mission Hera.

“The OHB Czechspace engineering team will be responsible for the development of the spacecraft structure including its detailed design, analytical verification, procurement and support in the mechanical test campaign. The engineers will also be responsible for Hera’s mechanical ground support equipment including the conceptual design of the Assembly, Integration & Test flow.”

OHB Czech Space is a subsidiary of OHB System AG, which works mainly in Germany.

The program they are working on is preparing to protect the Earth from a possible collision with an asteroid with ESA collaborating with NASA on two missions, Dart and Hera.

Pavel Dobeš, CEO of OHB Czechspace told Ceska Televize:

“The ability to carry out this mission is absolutely essential if we are to be able to protect our planet in the future and deflect any asteroid that could threaten a collision with Earth. And it is very important that the Czech Republic has decided to take part in this mission with such historical significance.”

OHB System announced they were working on the project in September but it has now been confirmed that the Brno-based company will be taking part.

They signed a contract with the ESA with a value of 129 million euros.

“I am glad and proud that OHB is also playing a decisive role in the major issue of space safety. This is because the dangers from outer space are real. There are millions of boulders there that could wipe out life on the earth in the event of a collision,” says OHB CEO Marco Fuchs at the time.

Hera will combine the data obtained from NASA’s DART (Double Asteroid Redirection Test) mission and ESA’s Hera mission to produce the most accurate knowledge possible from the first demonstration of asteroid deflection technology.

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