International Space Station Symposium Begins

The European Space Agency has organized ISS Symposium 2012 to take place in Berlin May 2 through May 4. The symposium, subtitled “Research in space for the benefit of humankind,” aims to pull together the station partner agencies for the purpose of reviewing past and future progress in fundamental and applied research.

“With the assembly of the International Space Station now being complete and all ISS partner laboratories in operation, we have laid a solid and steady foundation for a wide range of research on the Station for at least a decade,” said ESA Director of Human Spaceflight and Operations and former Mir astronaut Thomas Reiter.

The programme calls for reviews of experimental work in materials, quantum mechanics, biotechnology, energy, and more. Presenters hail from all five ISS partner agencies: NASA, Roscosmos, ESA, JAXA, and CSA, as well as universities and private research and technology enterprises. The symposium will close with an overview of each of the partner agency’s strategies for ISS utilization and presentations from NASA Administrator Charles Bolden and ESA chairs Berndt Feuerbacher and Michael Longair on how ISS can serve exploration purposes beyond low Earth orbit.

In the lead up to the conference, the partner agencies compiled an online publication International Space Station Benefits for Humanity. The document summarizes ISS successes to-date that have contributed to accomplishments and discoveries in science, technology, and education.

The symposium will be streamed live for remote viewing begining at 13:00 CEST May 2.

The video below revisits scientific experiments from the first eight years of research aboard ISS:



About the author

Merryl Azriel

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Having wandered into professional writing and editing after a decade in engineering, science, and management, Merryl now enjoys reintegrating the dichotomy by bringing space technology and policy within reach of an interested public. After three years as Space Safety Magazine’s Managing Editor, Merryl semi-retired to Visiting Contributor and manager of the campaign to bring the International Space Station collaboration to the attention of the Nobel Peace Prize committee. She keeps her pencil sharp as Proposal Manager for U.S. government contractor CSRA.

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