ESA at space forum in Glasgow
The 59th International Astronautical Congress, IAC 2008, is taking place between 29 September and 3 October in Glasgow, Scotland. HRH Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester, visited IAC 2008 and opened the exhibition at the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre (SECC).
Space programme leaders and over 2000 space professionals are gathering in Glasgow from all around the world to discuss past achievements, current activities and future plans to utilise and explore space. The event is organised by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and the British Interplanetary Society (BIS).
The theme for IAC 2008 is 'From imagination to reality' and this year the programme is the biggest ever. It features plenary events, highlight lectures, an exhibition, technical sessions and interactive discussions.
On Monday 29 September, the traditional Heads of Agency Plenary Session took place, where NASA (US), ESA (Europe), JAXA (Japan), CSA (Canada), Roscosmos (Russia), CNSA (China) and ISRO (India) outlined their plans for the coming years.
ESA created interested at IAC with Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain giving Highlight Lecture 1: 'Celebrating the tenth anniversary of the ISS', and on Monday afternoon, he and Simonetta Di Pippo, ESA Director of Human Spaceflight, met the press at the ESA exhibition area to report on the successful ATV re-entry.
A lively ESA exhibition area welcomes visitors for a journey of discovery, with models and impressive images of current and future planetary missions such as Herschel/Planck, due for launch next year, as well as future European space exploration missions to Mars, with a scale-model of the future ExoMars rover on display. The International Space Station, and the achievements of Europe’s Columbus laboratory and ATV Jules Verne, are also highlighted.
Click on the link on the right-hand menu bar to see some highlights of the opening day.