Future Prospects for Space Travel 2040

Future Prospects for Space Travel 2040


Within the framework of the project "Zukunftsvorausschau Raumfahrt 2040" (Future Prospects for Space Travel 2040), Fraunhofer IMW and INT developed and applied an innovative, science-based procedure for the DLR Space Administration, sponsored by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi). This procedure included the creation of scenarios and backcasting methods, various technology analyses in the form of technological forecasts, in-depth social science analyses, and various group discussion formats.

Today, conventional methods of strategic foresight are often insufficient to make organizations resilient. The relationships and interactions among technological, social, economic, and political factors are too complex. A systematic, methodologically sound, and medium- to long-term interdisciplinary approach to these spheres of influence enables better preparation for the future.


This one-year project addressed the following core questions:

1. Which social and economic developments and trends will influence the development of space travel in Germany by the year 2040?

2. What kinds of technological trends and developments, both within and outside the space industry, can be expected by 2040?

3. What scenarios can be deduced? What role do these scenarios predict for the future of space travel in Germany?

4. What medium- and long-term objectives can be derived from these scenarios?

5. What are the most resilient courses of action for the DLR Space Administration?

This process made it possible to derive comprehensive strategic options for action, thus encouraging the Space Administration in its own strategy development. Finally, a vision for the future of German space travel in 2040 was presented.

In cooperation with Fraunhofer Institute for Technological Trend Analysis INT

In cooperation with The German Aerospace Center (DLR)

Promoted by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs

-> Fraunhofer INT Future Prospects for Space Travel 2040 (in German) 


Future Scenarios for German space activities