Highlight from Space Group activities, Ecsite 2017
“Life Everywhere” was the theme of the Ecsite Annual Conference 2017, held in Porto, Portugal. Organised by ESA, Ecsite and the co-chairs of the Space Group, the two-day workshop was held on the 13t–14th of June in Porto, Portugal, at the Alfândega Congress Centre.
Participants received highlights from ESA for the 2017–2020 timeframe, and gained insight into how the Portuguese Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia – FCT – Space Programme engages with science centres and museums.
Throughout the workshop, both speakers and participants shared educational and exhibition resources and discussed three topics addressed by the ongoing pilot projects which are developed by the Space Group.
- Pilot Project 1 – “The International Space Station: Living and working in Space” is co-led by Cité de l’Espace, in Toulouse, France and Tycho Brahe Planetarium, in Copenhagen. (Ready to use ISS kit)
- Pilot Project 2 – “Is there life out there?” led by City of Arts and Sciences, Valencia, Spain, updated participants on the development of the educational resource, “Alive! An Extra-terrestrial Game”, to be completed in 2017.
- Pilot Project 3 – “Climate change: Monitoring the Atmosphere and Oceans from Space”. Participants exchanged ideas on this topic; a resource will be developed in 2018 by Ciência Viva, Lisbon, Portugal.
Museums representatives presented space-related projects during the showcase sessions.
Conference session "Is there life out there?"
On 15 June, speakers in the "Is there life out there?" conference session addressed the subject of searching for life in the Universe through ESA missions, and how science communicators can make the most of this fascinating topic.
Space Group at the Business Bistro
During the Ecsite Annual Conference “Life Everywhere” in Porto, Portugal in 2017, the ESA and the Ecsite Space Group were present at the Business Bistro. The stand aimed to promote the pilot project “Europe and the ISS: Living and working in Space”. Visitors could learn about the opportunities offered by the Space Group to collaborate and develop new projects around the topic “Space for life”.
This exhibit attracted great interest from the conference participants and played an important role in improving and extending communication on European space activities.
During the Ecsite Conference, the Alfândega Congress Centre also hosted an ESA exhibition enabling museum representatives to learn more about ESA’s activities in the areas of Space Transportation, Earth observation, Navigation, Telecommunications and Integrated Applications, Planetary Science, and Human Spaceflight and Exploration.
The next Space Group Annual Meeting, is on 27–28 November 2017 at ESA’s European Space Astronomy Centre, ESAC, Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain.
This meeting will be the opportunity to present the Space Group Strategy 2018-2020 and start discussions for the participation at the Ecsite Annual Conference 2018 in Geneva, Switzerland.
Note: The programme is subject to change, so please check back regularly to make sure you have the latest edition.