The space environment is currently of intense interest as the subject of multidisciplinary studies in science, applications and engineering, including the remote observation of the Earth and planets, probing the Sun–Earth connection, studying the Earth's environment from space, hazard warning and forecasting and exploring the underlying space and spacecraft technologies. There are natural connections between these areas in terms of the scientific techniques and the space technology required. Some of the connections are only now being discovered and exploited, and this conference, held at The Royal Society on 16–18 October 2001, provided a timely focus for pursuing these further and identifying others.

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