D'Appolonia signed a contract with the European Space Agency (ESA) to study the impact of space components on deep sea ecosystems: the Ecolauncher project.
Launcher components that fall to earth during the launching phase mainly end up in oceans in order to avoid impacts in populated areas. Over the next 12 months D’Appolonia, together with its subcontractor Creocean, will acquire the necessary know-how and references to quantify the impact these launcher components have on deep sea ecosystems, providing a basis and recommendations for future work.
The project will apply Functional Ecology, a branch of ecology that studies the roles and functions played by biological organisms in ecosystems, in order to understand the specific impact of launcher materials (and dismissed satellites) on ocean ecosystems. The project is part of the ESA Clean Space Initiative
, which promotes an eco-friendly approach to space activities.