The IV International Conference «Space Technologies: Present and Future», which is conducted under the aegis of IAA, took place on April 17-19 in Dniepropetrovsk and gathered about 300 participants – the eminent developers, world scientists, heads of industry companies of 22 nations, as well as interested creative youth.The traditional organizers of the Conference are Yuzhnoye SDO, SE PA Yuzhmash, O.Honchar DNU, and SSAU. The event takes place once in two years and registers the state of things in the industry and besides, forms the goals and tasks for the future. The Conference is not only a laboratory of innovations but also a powerful business site that accelerates implementation of projects in the industry. It serves as a necessary platform for coordination of international plans and solution of topical issues.
The quantitative dynamics of the Conference is appreciable: there are more participants and correspondingly, the papers. If in 2011 the representatives of 18 countries came to Dniepropetrovsk, then now the representatives of another four countries joined them.
The papers at the Conference were heard at five scientific sessions: «Modern and Future Space Launch Systems, LV, Their Components and Systems», «Modern and Future Space Satellite Systems», «Prospective Rocket Engines and Propulsion Systems», «Materials and Technologies», «Space for Humanity».
Dmitry Kolesnikov, the Chairman of Dniepropetrovsk Regional State Administration, addressed to the Conference participants with the welcoming speech. In particular, he said: “In 2012, Ukraine was included into the top twenty nations by the quantity of rocket and satellite launches. Our nation is one of the few that have the capabilities of creating spacecrafts and launching them into space. And the lion’s share in their creation is assigned to Yuzhnoye SDO and Yuzhmash.”.
At the opening of the Conference, Alexander Degtyarev, the Yuzhnoye SDO General Designer-General Director, noted that the forum provides the possibility of transforming the business, personal, scientific connections into real contracts that contribute to development of new projects and certainly will bring appreciable benefit for hundreds of Ukrainian companies attracted to participation in cooperation in their implementation. New contracts will allow modernizing the production facilities, will create highly intellectual job sites. The task of Ukrainian scientists and industrialists, as well as high public authorities is to develop and extend international cooperation, particularly, relying on the experience, capabilities and support of the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA).
Hiroki Matsuo, the IAA Vice-President, called attention to the possibility of using asteroids as a source of minerals required for earthlings and as “transit station” for spaceships flights to the Moon and Mars. But for realization of such bold fancies and non-standard ideas, numerous investigations are required. According to H.Matsuo, these directions of research are very closely connected with national prestige. And it would be wonderful, if Ukraine and other space nations select this way.
The idea of development and production of useful resources, in particular, nickel, on asteroids was supported by John Hightower, a Trustee of the Fund of Robert Heinlein Prize. He also noted that it is necessary to pay more attention to the problems of deriving energy from space. That energy will help to save our planet from aggravating ecological crises. The mission of R.Heinlein Fund just consists in providing the possibilities for young scientists for research work in different directions of space science.
It is important now to announce our intentions for the next three-years period. Ukraine has made its efforts more active in this direction and also is seeking support from authoritative scientists of the other countries.
The Conference participants noted also that all previous experience expressively testifies to the high scientific quality of the forums in Dniepropetrovsk and to the great organizational abilities of receiving Ukrainian party, ability of creating the atmosphere of sincerity and cordial hospitality.
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In the course of International Space Conference, more than 150 papers on various topics were heard. At the plenary meeting and then during the work in special sessions, Ukrainian and Russian speech was heard, as well as English, German, Chinese, Japanese, Estonian, French and may others, which did not become an obstacle for the fruitful discussions and search for ways to solve any given problem in the widest cooperation of the countries of Europe, Asia, USA, South America, Middle East and Far East.
A.Koroteyev (RF), the General Director of Federal State Unitary Enterprise M.V. Keldysh Research Center, Academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences, focused attention on the development of a new phase in space power engineering, speaking in detail, in particular, about the pluses and minuses of using nuclear energy. O.Ventskovsky, Director of Yuzhnoye SDO Representative Office in Brussels, drew attention by the detailed report on the processes of space projects development in Europe and participation of Ukrainian companies in some of them. The Conference participants heard with interest the report by A.Novikov, Yuzhnoye SDO Deputy General Designer for Scientific and Educational Work «Interaction of Science, Industry and Education in Space Rocketry Development» – about improvement of cooperation of scientific and industry circles aimed at obtaining high-quality space product.
The problems of anti-asteroid protection of the Earth were reflected in the report by A.Zaitsev (RF), the General Director of the Center of Planetary Protection, who suggested combining the efforts of the leading space nations in creation of the Tsitadel international planetary protection system.
A.Makarov, the Yuzhnoye SDO Chief Spacecraft Designer, spoke about the creation in Ukraine of Lybid’ national communication satellite system; the work on this system is planned to be completed in 2013.
Its orbital injection will ensure direct broadcasting of digital television and high-speed Internet-access in the countries of Eastern Europe, part of Asia and in Middle East.
Many scientists devoted their papers to the issues of creating Earth remote sensing systems (ERS), necessity of using environmentally friendly and safe types of rocket propellant, efforts to reduce existing space debris and designing such spacecraft, which after their lifetime expiry will not be a threat for the other, acting space objects. To the most topical problems, the issues may be attributed of development of space industry in some small countries that had never been involved in space activity before (for example, Estonia) or have recently included “space” into the number of most important strategic governmental tasks (Republic of Kazakhstan).
Once again the Conference confirmed its status of the representative and large-scale international forum that contributes to combining the efforts of the world community in advance to space exploration.