The Ecuadorian Civilian Space Program has three phases, Suborbital, Orbital and Lunar, in the first Suborbital phase, three manned missions are planned, the orbital phase has at least two manned missions and three unmanned missions and the Lunar phase is composed of four unmanned and one manned mission.

ESAA-01, the first suborbital mission is set for year 2009, it will be manned by Cmdr. Ronnie Nader and will carry two scientific experiments designed to study the radiation environment on the suborbital space zone. It is not clear from where the mission will take off, however, depending on some key factors, it is possible that the mission will launch from some point in the Ecuadorian coastal region.

This first phase employs a novel and ingenious scheme for low cost scientific access to space, renting the exclusive use of suborbital commercial space ships to develop this scientific missions, in order to be able to offer free or nearly no cost access to scientific research opportunities in space for Ecuadorian academic institutions. Other space agencies like NASA, have similar schemes for suborbital space scientific research this is due the convenience and low cost of renting commercial suborbital ships instead of developing and maintaining their own.

All the manned and unmanned missions for the Ecuadorian space program involve scientific experiments developed in the country; the objective, EXA has said, is the "Encourage the scientific and technological development of the country and to inspire the next generations of Ecuadorian scientists, engineers and explorers, actually, the experiments for the ESAA-01 mission have been assigned to the Escuela Politecnica del Litoral and the Ecuadorian Air Force