Poland Signs the Artemis Accords

NASA Deputy Administrator Pam Melroy and Polish Space Agency (POLSA) President Grzegorz Wrochna. Photo: US Mission in the UAE

ICYMI: Poland signed the Artemis Accords Tuesday, joining 12 other countries in a US-led agreement to pursue cooperative and sustainable space exploration.

NASA announced the founding group of eight member countries at last year’s International Astronautical Congress (IAC). It’s incrementally added more since. The agreement establishes principles for peaceful space exploration, and directs member states to register space objects and provide emergency assistance, when/if necessary.

More significantly, joining the accords is a prerequisite for participation in the Artemis lunar exploration program.

  • NASA’s inspector general expects the agency to spend $86 billion on Artemis through 2025. 
  • Artemis Accords also propose norms for exploration deeper into space, including crewed missions to Mars.

Shooting for the moon: In 2014, Poland joined the European Space Agency (ESA) and established its own program, POLSA. But Polish contributions to space  predate 2014. In the last four decades, “over 80 instruments designed and constructed by Polish scientists and engineers have been used in various international space missions,” POLSA President Grzegorz Wrochna said in Dubai.