Space Symposium Focus is on Costs

Dr. Wanda Austin moderated a panel on mission assurance in a cost-constrained environment at the National Space Symposium. Photo: Jessica Brown

How tight budgets will affect space systems was a theme throughout the 29th National Space Symposium (NSS), held April 8 – 11 at the Broadmoor hotel in Colorado Springs.

During the symposium, Aerospace leadership had an opportunity to meet with industry partners, as well as senior government and academic leaders.

Dr. Wanda Austin moderated a panel discussion on “Mission Assurance in a Budget-Constrained Environment.” Members of the panel consisted of Brig. Gen. Roger Teague, director of strategic plans, programs and analyses, Headquarters Air Force Space Command, USAF; Michael Gass, president and CEO, United Launch Alliance; Rob Strain, president, Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corporation; Gwynne Shotwell, president and COO, Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX); and James Wade, vice president, corporate mission assurance, Raytheon.

Throughout the week, the Aerospace booth in the Lockheed Martin Exhibit Center was popular with visiting schoolchildren as well as symposium attendees. The booth featured a model of the Aerospace Reentry Breakup Recorder, which records temperatures, stresses, and accelerations a space object experiences as it enters the atmosphere and breaks apart.

The annual space symposium, which its sponsors bill as “the premier gathering of the global space community,” had lower attendance this year due to effects of sequestration.