National Space Society's Space Settlement Summit Draws Industry Leaders

An enormously successful first annual Space Settlement Summit hosted by the National Space Society (NSS) occurred on January 10-11, 2017, in Santa Monica, California. Industry leaders, financial experts, scientists and engineers, and leading space activists were brought together to assess the state of the art driving space settlement.

Michael Suffredini, President Axiom Space and Jeff Manber, CEO Nanoracks, exchange views at the Space Settlement Summit
Michael Suffredini, President Axiom Space, and Jeff Manber, CEO Nanoracks, exchange views at the Space Settlement Summit

The NSS invitation-only Space Settlement Summit featured industry leaders including Josh Brost, Director of Government Business Development SpaceX, Dr. George Sowers, VP Advanced Programs ULA, Michael T. Suffredini, President Axiom Space, Steven Oldham, Senior VP MDA, Karlton Johnson, Director Information Risk Management Arconic, Jeff Manber, CEO Nanoracks, Akshay Patel, VP Strategy and Business Development Planetary Resources, and energy CEO and famous actor Harry Hamlin. Special guest Astronaut Yvonne Cagle headlined a dinner event celebrating the success of the movie HIDDEN FIGURES, speaking on recent medical advances from NASA. Key industry experts speaking included Dr. John C. Mankins on space solar power, Lt. Col. Thomas P. Schilling USAF on ultra-low cost access to space, Steve Wolfe of SpaceCom on open-source space settlement design, and Jeff Greason (XCOR founder) on funding space startups.

Dr. Knatokie Ford, White House Sr. Policy Advisor, Mark Hopkins, Chair of NSS Executive Committee, Astronaut Yvonnne Cagle, Aldis Hodge, Actor, Hidden Figures, and Bruce Pittman, NSS Senior Vice President celebrating Hidden Figures success.
Dr. Knatokie Ford, White House Sr. Policy Advisor, Mark Hopkins, Chair of NSS Executive Committee, Astronaut Yvonnne Cagle, Aldis Hodge, Actor in Hidden Figures, and Bruce Pittman, NSS Senior Vice President celebrating Hidden Figures success.

“The resources of Earth are limited and humanity is increasingly constrained by these limits. This is particularly true when reasonable environmental considerations are taken into account” said Mark Hopkins, Chair of the NSS Executive Committee. “Fortunately, the vast majority of the resources of the solar system both in terms of energy and materials lie in space rather than on Earth. Space settlement allows us to tap into these resources, thus smashing the resource constraints of Earth. Space settlement can create a hopeful prosperous future for all of humanity.”

Left to Right, Mark Hopkins addresses the SSS wrap-up panel of Jeff Greason, James Bennett, Rick Tumlinson of DSI, John Mankins, and Karlton Johnson.
Mark Hopkins (standing) addresses the Space Settlement Summit wrap-up panel of (left to right) Jeff Greason, James Bennett, Rick Tumlinson of DSI, John Mankins, and Karlton Johnson.

“With Elon Musk calling for the colonization of Mars, and Jeff Bezos looking forward to millions of people living and working in space, space settlement is an idea whose time has come,” said Dale Skran, NSS Executive Vice President.

“NSS has been developing a Roadmap for space settlement for a number of years (see www.nss.org/settlement/roadmap)” added Bruce Pittman, NSS Senior Vice President and Senior Operating Officer. “The Space Settlement Summit will provide input that guides NSS’s current updating of the Roadmap. Anyone interested in learning more about how NSS is supporting space development and settlement should attend the International Space Development Conference in St. Louis, Missouri, May 25-29 (isdc2017.nss.org).”

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