Friday, July 11, 2014

Advocates, Activists and Groups in Space

          by Chuck Black

There are a lot of space advocates in Canada.

Some of them are wrapped around academic institutions. Some are wrapped around ideas such as "open source" or "working in space" and a few are wrapped around activities like launching rockets or becoming a space tourist.

Here's a representative sampling of some of the more interesting.

The Astronomy and Space Exploration Society (ASX) - A non-profit organization run out of the University of Toronto with a mandate to educate, excite, and inspire students, professionals, and the general public about astronomy and space. Best known for its annual January astronomy symposiums.

The AstroNut's Kids Space Club - A space focused educational group for elementary school students created in May 2010 by the father/ son team of Ray and Brett Bielecki. The various "missions" of spaceship "Mercury One" and its successor "Mercury Two" have been profiled on CBC, CTV, CITY-TV, A-Channel, the Daily Planet (for the Discovery Channel) and Rogers TV.

The Calgary Space Workers Society - Local advocacy group focused on how "to live and work in space." The group hosted the 2007 "Canadian Space Summit."

The Canadian Association of Rocketry listing of affiliated organizations - Who says that Canadian's don't build rockets? Certainly not these self-supporting, non-profit organizations whose sole purpose is to promote development of amateur rocketry as a recognized sport and worthwhile activity.

The Canadian Aeronautics and Space Institute (CASI) - A nonprofit technical organization for aeronautics, space and remote sensing. Host for a variety of annual events including the upcoming 65th International Astronautics Congress (IAC), which will be held in Toronto from September 29th - October 3rd.
The Canadian Association of Science Centres - An organization promoting and encouraging public involvement with Canadian public science centres and the organizations needed to support them.

The Canadian Astronomical Society – Founded in 1971 and incorporated in 1983 as a society of professional astronomers devoted to the promotion and advancement of knowledge of the universe through research and education. Membership is open to persons with a professional involvement with these goals in astronomy and the related sciences.

The Canadian Foundation for the International Space University (CFISU) – The charitable organization promoting the International Space University (ISU) in Canada.
The Canadian Satellite Design Challenge - A privately funded, biannual event focused on teams of Canadian university students (undergraduate and graduate) who design and build an operational small-satellite, based on commercially-available, "off-the-shelf" components. 

The Canadian Science Policy Centre - Passionate professionals from industry, academia, and science-based governmental departments who organize the yearly Canadian Science Policy Conference. This years event, will be held from October 15th - 17th in Halifax, NS.

The Canadian Space Society (CSS) – A non-profit corporation promoting Canadian space activities. Organizes the annual Canadian Space Summit and just rolled out its Canadian space asset map, a listing of organizations involved in the Canadian space industry.

The Centre for Spatial Law and Policy - Not Canadian, but this Virginia based think tank does focus on the legal and policy issues associated with geo-spatial data and technology, which is of some use to the Canadians who are ranked as leaders within this growing field.

Engineers Canada - The national organization of the 12 provincial and territorial associations that regulate the profession of engineering in Canada and license the country's more than 260,000 members of the engineering profession. The organization also issues national position statements on key issues relating to the public interest, including infrastructure, labour mobility and regulating the profession.

Friends of NASA - An independent non-governmental organization (NGO) dedicated to building international support for peaceful space exploration, commerce, scientific discovery and STEM education organized by Montreal, PQ based Dwayne Lawrence in 2008. The organization claims over 10,000 professional members worldwide from over 50 countries plus 180,000+ public followers on social media: Google+, Twitter and Facebook.

The Geological Association of Canada - A national geo-science society, publisher and distributor of geo-science books and journals. Also holds a variety of conferences, meetings and exhibitions for the discussion of geological problems and the exchange of views in matters related to geology. Geologists often use Earth imaging and geo-spatial satellite technology derived from our space program to inventory natural resources.

Hacklab.TO - One of a number of small Canadian organizations like the Interaccess Electronic Media Arts Centre, the Kwartzlab Makerspace, the Makerkids non-profit workshop space for kids, Think|Haus, the Site 3 coLaboratoryUnLab and others who focus on the technologies associated with open source additive manufacturing/ 3-D printing. These techniques show great promise for a variety of low cost space manufacturing technologies.

The Mars Society Canada - Semi-active Canadian subsidiary of the US based Mars Society advocacy group. Although the Canadian organizations has a past history of strong activism and support for research projects like the Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station on Devon Island, the current website serves mostly as a conduit for general interest science news about the red planet. The one remaining active Canadian chapter of the society is in Winnipeg, MB.

The OpenLuna Foundation - A privately funded public outreach program (officially a US based 501(c) 3) to encourage the use of open-source tools and methodologies (open design) for space focused activities. The founding member and project manager/ director of the organization is Paul Graham, who lives in London, Ontario.

The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada - 4,000 members, including about 500 "unattached" members from remote parts of Canada and around the world and strong chapters in Vancouver and 28 other centres across the country.

Science Rendezvous - Grassroots not-for-profit organization and public platform to promote science awareness and increase science literacy in Canada. Holds the yearly, spring Science Rendezvous at the University of Toronto, St. George campus.

Space Canada – A not-for-profit organization dedicated to the promotion of solar energy from space. Organized the 2009 Symposium on Solar Energy from Space. Space Canada president and CEO George Dietrich has a long history of supporting US and Canadian NewSpace activities.  

Space Launch Canada – A federally incorporated, but privately funded, initiative dedicated to building a space launch facility in British Columbia.

The Space Society of London (SSoL) - Aims to unite members of the University of Western Ontario and greater London communities who have a common interest in space. SSoL is also the local chapter HQ for Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS).

The Space Tourism Society Canadian Chapter - A Canadian chapter of the US based Space Tourism Society (STS) which intends to promote space tourism and the acquisition of  "financial, political and public support to make space tourism available to the general population in the near future."

The Toronto International Space Apps Challenge - An annual "hackathon" organized each spring as part of the NASA International Space Apps Challenge.

The Toronto Students for the Advancement of Aerospace (TSAA) - A new group focused on building an annual conference series focused around the "do-it-yourself engineer" in order to "educate, motivate and enrich the experience of students in aerospace and related fields."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Support our Patreon Page