The CCSDS Charter was originally approved in 1982. It was updated in May 1999 and again in September 2004.


The major space agencies of the world recognize that there are benefits in using standard techniques for handling space data and that, by cooperatively developing these techniques, future data system interoperability will be enhanced. In order to assure that work towards standardization of space-related information technologies provides the maximum benefit for the interested agencies, both individually and collectively, an international Consultative Committee for Space Data Systems (CCSDS) is established as a forum for international cooperation in the development of data handling techniques supporting space research, including space science and applications.


The purposes of the CCSDS are as follows:

  1. to provide a forum whereby interested agencies may exchange technical information relative to the development or application of standards for space-related information technologies;
  2. to identify those common elements of space data systems which, if implemented in a standardized way, will result in significant enhancements in the operation of future cooperative space missions, or in the sharing of mission products;
  3. to develop through consensus appropriate Recommendations that will guide the development of agency infrastructure so that interoperability is maximized;
  4. to facilitate and promote the use of software and hardware developed under the CCSDS program by all participating agencies;
  5. to promote the application of the Recommendations within the space mission community; and
  6. to maintain cognizance of other international standardization activities that may have direct impact on the design or operation of space mission data systems.
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