Reflections on the International Astronautical Congress 2015 in Jerusalem - Thursday
The fourth day of the IAC a significant decrease of visitors could be observed. Several delegations prematurely left Jerusalem due to security situation and some of exhibitors, such as JAXA, were dismissed of directly by their home countries. Even so, the CSO booth was attended by some interesting visitors.
Polish delegation invited us to the upcoming Czech-Polish Days in Warsaw and director of the CSO, Jan Kolář, had a brief meeting with the director of the Polish Space Agency, Marek Banaskiewicz. The CSO was visited by the Israeli director of industrial company C.M.I. manufacturing and seeking buyers for its machines for metal 3D printing. Recent years, the technology is becoming popular in space. Even ESA has included it in its technological plan this year. An American consultant and professor of applications of satellite systems at the University of North Carolina, Dr. Scott Madry, came to our booth to tell us about his plans to visit Prague in the Erasmus exchange program and need for opportunities to present his educational activities there. On Thursday, school excursions started to appear more significantly in the congress and the children did not miss just one booth.
The CSO was also visited by a representative of a young Italian company D-Orbit, which won several international competitions and received investment support for the development of small pushing device with solid fuel motor for the removal of desfunstional satellites from the orbit. It is the Italian counterpart of the Singaporean Astroscale (see IAC 2015 - Day Three). The Italian D-Orbit competes for primacy deployment of this technology in practice. D-Orbit was founded in 2011, employs 27 enthusiasts and managed to suceed quickly in the world of international competition. 80% of its development costs cover private investors and the rest is spread in contracts with ESA and the EU. The company constantly monitors new project opportunities and respond to calls in EMITS. Their response is matter of just two to three weeks, including the creation of a consortium. D-Orbit also offers technology transfer and looks for project partners from other countries, including the Czech Republic. During the four years of its existence, it has developed its own deorbital facility, which will be fully qualified in space next year, has gained experience in building of CubeSata and within two years it plans to build its own small satellite, weighing tens of kilograms.
Michal Kuneš of CSO attended IAF committee for student activities and ensured the next winner of the Czech Space Competition present his work not only on the Space Generation Congress, but also at the IAC in the technical section for students. This year, the SGAC together with its partners has povided funds to more than 40 students and young professionals to to cover their travel costs to Jerusalem. The two from Czech Republic who managed to succeed was Marek Novák of Czech Technical University who won the Czech Space Competition with experimental instrument to demonstrate wireless power transmission and Jan Kolmaš studying at the University of Stanford, who won the SSPI Scholarship for an essay on the benefits of satellite applications for human life. All the information about these opportunities for the next year will be distributed on our web and through CSO Czech Space Network. Michal Kuneš also helped organize a virtual forum focusing on satellite navigation and telecommunications. Virtual forum is part of the technical section of the IAC, that can be accessed through the Internet. It seves for presenting the work of the participants from their home or office, but it is also possible to connect to virtual forum just as a listener.