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EU Hydrazine Ban Could Cost Space Industry Billions

26 October 2017
Space News reports that the European Union (EU) is considering a ban of the “toxic satellite propellant hydrazine as early as 2021,” which could present a “major setback” for the space industry. Speaking at Space Tech Expo Europe, Airbus Defence and Space Principal Propulsion Engineer Priya Fernando said that even if the aerospace sector were to receive an exemption to continue using hydrazine, the price of the fuel could double in Europe. If hydrazine is added to the Registration of Evaluation Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulation, Airbus has forecast additional costs of $354 million a year for launcher and propulsion system manufacturers, and $236 million per year for spacecraft manufacturers. Launch providers would be hit by an additional $590 million a year, with a potential $2.36 billion total yearly impact on the European economy. Fernando said, “It’s a nightmare not only for Airbus but for the whole European space industry.” (Image: Ariane 5 ECA lifts off, carrying a payload of satellites, in Kourou, French Guiana, Saturday Feb.12, 2005. Credit: Associated Press-©)
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