A-Z of European Space

The first decades: 1959-1994

  • 1958 - Doctorate in law and joined the German Federal Ministry of the Interior as an administrator
  • 1962 - Legal Advisor for COPERS and later ESRO
  • 1964 - Assistant Director for International and Legal Affairs for ESRO and later ESA, from 1974 Assistant Director for International and Legal Affairs
  • 1979 - left ESA to administer a research programme in the Federal Ministry of the Interior in Bonn
  • 1980-1983 - Developed a nuclear energy programme at the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna
  • 1984 - Directed UNESCO’s office for Operational Activities in Paris.

In 1962 Kaltenecker joined the Secretariat of COPERS, with responsibility for legal affairs and on the establishment of ESRO in 1964 became its Legal Advisor, dealing with many of the crises of the early years over contracts and member states' responsibilities. In 1974, during the creation of ESA, he became Assistant Director for International and Legal Affairs, supervising offices in Paris and Washington and developing relations with non-member states and international organisations. He was closely involved in negotiations for collaboration between ESA and other countries, including the Ariane programme and the NASA-ESA Spacelab programme.

  • 1959 – Head of Mission in Brazil for ICEM, the Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration, which went on to become today’s International Organization for Migration (IOM) in 1989
  • 1950s-60s – also worked in South America for the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
  • 1967-1978 – Appointed as Secretary to the ESRO Council and Head of the Director General’s Office, a position that in the early 1970s became Head of the Director General’s Cabinet
  • Left ESA on his retirement in May 1978
  • Undertook studies at ETH Zürich, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich
  • 1966-1967 - First Director of ESTEC for ESRO, came from a background in Swiss industry
  • 1936 - Doctorate in Physics, Habilitation in Heidelberg
  • 1931-1946 – worked in Berlin, first at AEG’s research institute (1931-1932) and then at Telefunken (1932-46) becoming Director of Telefunken's High Vacuum Development Section
  • 1946-1950 – Moved to Paris, worked in the research centre of the Compagnie Génerale de Télégraphe Sans Fil, leading a research group in microwave tubes
  • 1950-1952 - National Electronics Institute in Madrid
  • 1952-1967 - returned to Germany to work for Siemens and Halske AG in Munich.  Appointed Director of their research laboratory in 1959.
  • 1968-1971 -Director of ESTEC
  • Taught at University of Munich, University of Madrid, Technical University of Stockholm and Chalmers University of Gotherburg

From 1968 to 1971 Kleen was the Director of ESTEC, the European Space Technology Centre in Noordwijk, the Netherlands.  His drive to introduce reliable and state-of-the-art technology laid the groundwork for the successful launch of several satellites by ESA after his retirement.