SWF Contributed to the 67th International Astronautical Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico

Monday, October 3, 2016

SWF staff attended and participated in the 67th International Astronautical Congress (IAC) in Guadalajara, Mexico. The International Astronautical Federation (IAF), the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA), and the International Institute of Space Law (IISL) organizes the annual meeting of the IAC, a meeting of many international actors involved in space sector activities consisting of plenary sessions, lectures, paper presentations, and meetings. The congress is attended by the agency heads and senior executives of the world's space agencies, along with academics, researchers, industry and commerce executives, students, and young professionals. This major gathering of space professionals from around the world is held in a different part of the globe every year; previous IACs were recently held in Jerusalem, Israel; Toronto, Canada; and Beijing, China.

SWF attends IAC in numerous capacities, including: paper presenters, rapporteurs of panels, IAF voting members, IISL officials, and members of IAF committees. This year's papers, by SWF Technical Advisor Brian Weeden and SWF Project Managers Ian Christensen and Krystal Wilson, covered topics as diverse as using Earth observation to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, future issues of commercial space sustainability, and possible consequences of debris detection, mitigation, and removal. SWF Project Manager Chris Johnson served in his capacity as assistant executive secretary of the IISL, rapporteuring sessions of the IISL colloquium, the IISL general assembly, and the IISL board of directors meeting. Washington DC Office Director Victoria Samson provides more insight here.

SWF also holds an annual competition through which it choose young professionals to sponsor their attendance at the IAC to present their research. The goal of this sponsorship is to grant the opportunity for young professionals to further their professional development and to inject new ideas into the space community. Requirements for applicants for the scholarship are that they be 35 years old and younger at the time of the IAC, and have had abstracts accepted for oral presentation. This year’s group of eight winners came from Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Nigeria, Turkey, and the United States. Their papers can be found here.

Next year’s IAC will be in Adelaide, Australia. SWF looks forward to continuing its long relationship with the IAC and using the opportunities that arise at the congress to work toward the safe, secure, and sustainable use of outer space.

Last updated on October 7, 2016