Jan Woerner to leave ESA on Feb. 28, saving the agency a 6-month transition to successor Aschbacher

by Peter B. de Selding

PARIS — European Space Agency (ESA) Director-General Jan Woerner will leave his post on Feb. 28 after both Woerner and the agency’s delegations agreed that a six-month transition to successor Josef Aschbacher would be uncomfortably long.

ESA’s 22 national delegations were informed of the decision on Jan. 7.

Woerner’s mandate formally extends to June 30, and he had indicated he was ready to stay on until the end, in part to give Aschbacher, now ESA’s director of Earth observation, time to transition . . .

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