Space Studies Program 2017

26 June - 25 August 2017
hosted by the CIT, Cork, Ireland.

The International Space University (ISU) provides graduate-level training to the future leaders of the emerging global space community. The Space Studies Program (SSP) is a nine-week program that covers the main space related fields. SSP celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.

SSP17 Poster

IMG 0266Wow, 8 weeks of our Team Projects have gone by really fast, we here in the Future of the International Space Station team project are busy getting our teeth into potential future missions for the International Space Station after 2024. There are almost 30 use from 15 different countries and many more backgrounds - how on Earth (pun intended) are we going to get this done?

Well we have indeed come up with some interesting ideas: would you rather have a space hotel? Or a space mining processing plant? The possibilities are endless!

Over the last 8 weeks we have spent countless hours looking at a wide range of info on the ISS, how was it built? What are some of the great political feats that were pulled of to make it happen? Then we clustered our ideas, refining them and asking some expert opinions. Chit chatting with astronauts Yi So-yeon and Bob Thirsk gave us some great first hand experiences about floating around in space and it definitely sounds like something that Humans should keep doing!

SSP17 Rocketlaunch 165Rockets, balloons, rovers... These are a few of the many exciting activities of the International Space University’s 30th Space Studies Program (SSP) held in collaboration with partner institution, Cork Institute of Technology (CIT). The highlight among them all has got to the most tangible of them all.. Rockets!! The word rocket is all it takes to get the public on their feet and yes, off the ground too!

NahumBerlin-based Mexican artist Nahum was one of the panelists on the Arthur C. Clarke Panel. This panel celebrates the intersection of space and popular culture in the same way that Arthur Clarke's works popularized space to the general public. This panel invites practitioners from different cultural areas to share how space has inspired their work. Clarke also led a workshop entitled ‘After Federov' which encouraged participants to think about alternative rationales for space missions, to let go of conventional thinking and go beyond the limitation of existing concepts and ideals to create their own personal space programs. Participants presented many interesting ideas including a love story as a space rational, peace, the quest to live forever and a dream to go to visit Titan.

Ana Cristina van Oijhuizen Galhego RosaWell, it has been very busy week of working here in the SSP17 as a TA and now I have the opportunity to tell you what this amazing program did in my life. It is pleasure for me to share with all of you my story.

To be part of this space world belongs I believe something related with your personality. Yes, like you, I was as well fascinated with the Star War movie, scientific books, among others, which was quite unusual for a girl born in a very small city in the middle of nowhere in Brazil, where people normally had your work, family and went to the Catholic Church.

But I wanted much more than to be in a small city. I wanted to discover the world, to go the Moon!! I was lost in which career to follow. I loved math so I decided to follow computer science but in the middle of my preparation to the University I changed to Law. Well, this does not matter! At the end I became a space lawyer.

How’s a week in the life of a Space Studies Program Teaching Associate? Well, no two weeks are the same, but this newly released footage from week two of SSP17 might give you a unique new perspective. Petter Evju Skanke, the Teaching Associate for the Space Humanities Department, brings you along on a few of his highlights from last week. See what he got up to! 

If you want to see more of his videos or just like his Norwegian accent, you can check out his very own YouTube channel here. And be sure to follow @PetterSkanke on Twitter for even more behind the scenes of the SSP!

w5 1

The staff decided to set the pace for the cultural nights by organizing an intercultural night of food and interesting presentations about the different cultures represented in the staff population.

As the only African and Nigerian, I decided to make proud my cultural heritage by cooking a delicious popular west African meal. Caleb magnanimously offered to drive me to do the shopping even when I didn't know where I was going.

Blog03 001How incredible it is to realize that the first week of ISU’s Space Studies Program is already over. With so many events happening over the past week here in Cork, Ireland, we didn’t even realize there have been 19 core lectures, numerous team project activities, and fundamental workshops. Also, we have shared this amazing time with three extraordinary astronauts all in “one single week!” As one of the SSP teaching associate’s said: “this is the better way to spend the summer.” In addition, to the mind-blowing talks from astronauts Dan Tani, Jeff Hoffman and Soyeon Yi, their lectures were given in front of a giant moon sculpture titled, “Museum of the Moon!” It was completely mindblowing!

2It is Tuesday morning at four o'clock in the morning and our facial expressions are easy to decipher: Our faces are a mixture of fatigue, smile, and enthusiasm! Like every day we’ve experienced since we've been here, it's impossible to predict what our day will be.

We don't know who we're going to meet, what stories we're going to hear, or all the incredible things we're going to learn. Although these factors are completely uncertain, one thing is certain: the day will be enriching and surprising!

Blog 002 01Funnily enough what really touched me at the official Opening Ceremony of the ISU SSP Space Studies Program 2017 was the parade of participants carrying their national flags. I had my reservations about the parade to be honest. Isn’t ISU SSP all about bringing people and cultures together? Why ask the participants to present themselves by means of their national symbols? Also: playing national anthems and carrying flags, isn’t that a bit top heavy?

Blog Anderson 01So this week was the first week of Departmental Activities here at SSP17. HPS started it off with quite a bang. After covering Medical Care in Space we went ahead and performed one of our Professional Visits for our activity "Train Like an Astronaut".

We went to the National Maritime College of Ireland, which is the leaders in Maritime training in Ireland, to participate in Water Survival Training. This is training that all maritime individuals receive and is part of first level training for astronauts before they are even selected as Astronaut Candidates.

SSP17 Blogpost PhotoStruggling with all the names – for a little while

On Saturday 25 June the more than 110 participants of this year’s ISU SSP arrived in Cork from 26 countries worldwide. To make them feel welcome and to get them geared up for their intensive 9-week pressure-cooker program on space, ISU’s Space Studies Program (SSP17) they were treated to a welcome diner, a participant and staff introduction, brunch, instructions sessions and an open-top tour of the city. How are they settling in? Michael: “Great, but I am still struggling a bit with the names.”

IMG 1597aEver trained like an astronaut before? Me neither - until now! Myself along with the Space Studies Program participants in the Human Performance in Space Department stretched our worthy sea legs for a day of real water emergency scenarios.

At around noon, we arrived at the National Maritime College of Ireland. The College overlooks the gorgeous Cobh Harbour. The position of this institution is quite fitting as Cobh, formerly known as Queenstown, was the Titanic’s last port of call before sailing off for it’s fateful journey.

Blog Intro 01We are pleased to announce that the International Space University will be continuing the traditional >Space Studies Program blog!  

Over the next nine weeks, our teaching associates, participants and other authors will be highlighting all the great experiences in and outside the classroom and all around Ireland!  There will also be loads of behind the scenes with what’s happening at this year's host institution, Cork Institute of Technology.  

And, we are very proud to introduce a new digital addition to ISU! Head to your digital app store and download the Int’l space Space University digital application.  This is the easiest way to keep up to date with all the news and events happing at this year’s #SSP17!

Plus, there’s loads happening on our social media channels.  Subscribe to our Facebook page and follow @ISU_SSPon Twitter for great content.

112 SSP
150 Visiting
26 Represented
56 Core
98 Departmental
4 Team

Meet the SSP17 Team

ISU Logo CIT Logo

Prof. Walter Peeters ISU President
Prof. Walter Peeters ISU President Career: Initial management positions in construction and petrochemical industry. Joined the European Space Agency (ESA) in 1983 in a number of project control and management functions, among others in the HERMES Full Biography
Dr. Omar Hatamleh ISU SSP Director
Dr. Omar Hatamleh ISU SSP Director Omar is the Director of the SSP at ISU. Prior to assuming his new assignment, Omar was the Chief Innovation Officer, Engineering at NASA Johnson Space Center responsible for empowering the organization creative thinking and develop capacity to innovate. Full Biography
Dr. Niall Smith CIT Local Organizing Committeee Lead
Dr. Niall Smith CIT Local Organizing Committeee Lead Niall Smith received his PhD (Astrophysics) from University College Dublin in 1990. In 2006 he was appointed as the first Head of Research with responsibilities for the overall management of an annual Full Biography
Elizabeth Twomey CIT Local Organizing Committeee Coordinator
Elizabeth Twomey CIT Local Organizing Committeee Coordinator Reporting directly to the Head of Research, as Senior Research Administrator I act as the principal contact point between the research community and the Research Office. I provide support with respect to Full Biography
Arif Göktuğ Karacalıoğlu ISU SSP Academic Coordinator
Arif Göktuğ Karacalıoğlu ISU SSP Academic Coordinator During his secondary school years, everyone was thinking that Göktuğ (a.k.a. G2) will excel in literature and become a writer. But nope, he had surprised them all by picking “science” as his primary discipline and this was the beginning of his technical career. Full Biography
Sébastien Bessat ISU SSP Logistics Coordinator
Sébastien Bessat ISU SSP Logistics Coordinator Sébastien is an IT professional with skills in databases management and web development, holding a DUT in Computer Sciences. IT support was his main assignment in different positions for DARTY, Paris-Bercy, and Alcoa, St Cosme, France. Full Biography
Géraldine Moser ISU Head of Business Development Unit
Géraldine Moser ISU Head of Business Development Unit
Joel Herrmann ISU IT Services Manager
Joel Herrmann ISU IT Services Manager  

SSP17 Academic Team

Prof. Chris Welch Core Chair
Prof. Chris Welch Core Chair Chris has been orbiting ISU since he first met founders Peter Diamandis and Todd Hawley in 1987. In 2011, after two decades in UK academia, Chris moved to ISU in Strasbourg to become Professor of Spacecraft Engineering and Program Director of ISU’s Masters. SSP17 will be his eleventh SSP. Full Biography
Dr. Geoffrey Steeves Core Chair
Dr. Geoffrey Steeves Core Chair Dr. Geoff Steeves is a physics professor at the University of Victoria and a faculty member at the International Space University. He is a co-founder of the StarAcers science education program and a top 16 finalist in Canada's 2008/09 astronaut recruitment campaign. Full Biography
Dr. Niamh Shaw Associate Core Chair
Dr. Niamh Shaw Associate Core Chair Dr. Niamh Shaw, an engineer, scientist and performer is passionate about awakening people’s curiosity, merging performance and theatre with communication, engineering, science, art, and technology. She is interested in pushing boundaries in telling the human story behind science, particularly through Space themes, creating science events for both family and arts audiences. Full Biography
Dr. Su-Yin Tan Space Applications Department
Dr. Su-Yin Tan Space Applications Dept. Chair Dr. Su-Yin Tan is a Senior Lecturer in the Geomatics Program and Director of the Applied Geomatics Research Laboratory at the University of Waterloo, Canada. She is a Faculty Member and chairs the Academic Council of the International Space University (ISU) Full Biography
Prof. Dennis Irwin Space Engineering Department
Prof. Dennis Irwin Space Engineering Dept. Chair Dennis Irwin became dean of the Fritz J. and Dolores H. Russ College of Engineering and Technology at Ohio University in July 2002. Irwin was chair of the College’s School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from 1997 to 2002. He was selected as the school's Outstanding Graduate Instructor and Outstanding Undergraduate Instructor three times each. Full Biography
Dr. Ana Diaz Artiles Human Performance in Space Department
Dr. Ana Diaz Artiles Human Performance in Space Dept. Chair Dr. Ana Diaz Artiles (SSP10) is a lecturer and research associate at the Sibley School for Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at Cornell University. Her interests focus on the biomedical and human factors aspects Full Biography
Ruth McAvinia Space Humanities Department
Ruth McAvinia Space Humanities Dept. Chair A native of County Meath, Ruth studied Drama and Modern Irish at the University of Dublin, Trinity College, and Film and Television Studies at the University of Glasgow in Scotland. She worked in radio and national television news, as well as live sports commentary, for a number of years before deciding to retrain in science communication. Full Biography
Eric Dahlstrom Space Sciences Department
Eric Dahlstrom Space Sciences Dept. Chair Mr. Eric Dahlstrom is co-founder of International Space Consultants, and is a space science and space engineering consultant. He studied the physics of black holes at University of North Carolina, galactic astronomy at the University of Maryland, and space systems engineering at George Washington University. Full Biography
Remco Timmermans Space Management and Business Department
Remco Timmermans Space Management and Business Dept. Co-Chair Remco Timmermans (1970) is a leading social media specialist for the space industry, developing successful social media marketing campaigns for clients all over the world. Remco founded and leads two very Full Biography
Daniel Rockberger Space Management and Business Department
Daniel Rockberger Space Management and Business Dept. Co-Chair I was born in London England and moved with my family to Israel in 1981 where I went through the entire education system including my undergraduate degree of Mechanical Engineering at the Full Biography
Dr. Ray Williamson Space Policy, Economics & Law Department
Dr. Ray Williamson Space Policy, Economics & Law Dept. Chair Ray A. Williamson is retired from Secure World Foundation, where he served as Executive Director between 2007 and 2012 and Senior Advisor until 2014. Previously, he was Research Professor of Space Policy and Full Biography
Dr. Timiebi Aganaba Space Policy, Economics & Law Department
Associate Chair
Dr. Timiebi Aganaba Space Policy, Economics & Law Dept.
Associate Chair
Previously the Executive Director of the World Space Week Association, coordinating the global response to the UN-declared World Space Week, Timiebi is currently undertaking a fellowship in the International Full Biography
Dr. Daniel Glover TP "The Future of ISS"
Dr. Daniel Glover TP "The Future of ISS" Chair Daniel R. Glover, Jr. holds an MBA from Cleveland State University and a Ph.D. in system engineering from the University of Toledo. Dr. Glover is a retired NASA engineer where he worked on projects such as the Galileo mission to Jupiter, cryogenic fluid management research, and satellite networking. Full Biography
Dr. Jan Walter Schroeder TP "The Future of ISS"
Associate Chair
Dr. Jan Walter Schroeder TP "The Future of ISS" Associate
Walter’s background is in Biomedical Engineering with a focus on human-machine interfaces and neuroscience. Walter studied Medical Informatics in Heidelberg/Heilbronn and wrote his master thesis in Taipeh, Taiwan (ROC) developing a new method for 3D dynamic. Full Biography
Gary Martin TP "Entrepreneurial and Innovation Ecosystem for Space" Co-Chair
Gary Martin TP "Entrepreneurial and Innovation Ecosystem for Space" Co-Chair Mr. Gary L. Martin is the Director of Partnerships at Ames Research Center. In this position he oversees public-private and international partnerships for the Center and NASA’s Small Full Biography
Dr. Norah Patten TP "Entrepreneurial and Innovation Ecosystem for Space" Co-Chair
Dr. Norah Patten TP "Entrepreneurial and Innovation Ecosystem for Space" Co-Chair Dr. Norah Patten is a faculty member at the International Space University and is the founder and director of a start-up company in Ireland which specialises in using space as Full Biography
Robert Hill TP "Roadmaps and Strategies for Space Sector National Capacity Building" Co-Chair
Robert Hill TP "Roadmaps and Strategies for Space Sector National Capacity Building" Co-Chair Robert Hill is the Director of the Northern Ireland Space Office and chair of the Northern Ireland Space Special Interest Group (NISSIG) hosted by the UK Aerospace, Defence, Security Full Biography
Dr. Ed Chester TP "Roadmaps and Strategies for Space Sector National Capacity Building" Co-Chair
Dr. Ed Chester TP "Roadmaps and Strategies for Space Sector National Capacity Building" Co-Chair Ed’s academic background includes a BSc in Physics, MSc in Electronics and PhD in Computer Arithmetic and Signal Processing. Much of the time that this all represents was spent on Full Biography
Joseph Pellegrino TP "The Future of Internet of Things and Their Applicability to Space" Chair
Joseph Pellegrino TP "The Future of Internet of Things and Their Applicability to Space" Chair Joe graduated in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University.  His first assignment was at the NASA Johnson Space Center as a contractor with Boeing, where he trained crews of several successful Space Shuttle missions in various simulators and the neutral buoyancy pool. Full Biography
Carol Carnett Space English Access Course Lead
Carol Carnett Space English Access Course Lead Carol Carnett holds a graduate level certification in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. She concentrates her work on English communication skills for professionals in the academic, administrative, and technical sectors of the space community, and continues training in her field through additional advanced degree programs. Full Biography

Host Institution

CIT Logo

Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) is situated on the picturesque south coast of Ireland. The roots of CIT stretch back to the Royal Cork Institution which existed from 1807 until 1861 from whence we get our culture of putting knowledge to work for the good of our students and the society we serve.

Today, CIT is distributed over four campuses with a total student enrolment of 12,000 and 850 academic staff. The Bishopstown Campus is the largest of our campuses, located within easy reach of Cork City Centre. It is home to the faculties of Engineering and Science, Business and Humanities. This campus boasts extensive facilities including lecture theatres, laboratories, a library, research centres, shops, running tracks, tennis courts, all-weather and grass pitches and a gymnasium.

Two of our other campuses are in the City Centre itself – the School of Music and the Crawford College of Art and Design – whilst the National Maritime College of Ireland is sited on the shores of Cork Harbour, the second largest natural harbour in the world. CIT also operates Ireland’s only space-themed science and discovery centre at Blackrock Castle Observatory.

The Institute graduates the largest number of professionally accredited engineers in Ireland every year and has particular research strengths in embedded networked systems (where the Nimbus Centre is Ireland’s largest research centre devoted to Internet of Things research), photonics, life sciences, entrepreneurship, competitiveness and innovation. The CIT Rubicon Incubation Centre supports the development of 57 start-up companies at any one time and CIT researchers have spun out 4 companies in the last two years establishing the Institute as an innovation leader.

CIT’s ability to anticipate change has been central to our growth and our support for all our stakeholders. As we enter a new era where our nation’s industries look for new markets for their products and processes, it is fitting that we are hosting SSP17.

Important dates

Application Deadline

Still not applied? Hurry up! 

Arrival Day

Registration takes place between 9am - 6pm!

Welcome Dinner

Participants' self introductions...

Cork City Tour

SEAC Graduation Ceremony
Staff's self introductions

Opening Ceremony

Smile! You are in the official SSP17 Class Picture!

Robotics Competition

Are you ready to assemble and operate the winning robot?

Core Lectures Exam

Be there!

30th Anniversary Dinner

Space Masquerade

Why not "you" win this year's costume competition?

Model Rocket Launch

Up up up! Clear skies!

Ireland Tour (optional)

A not-to-miss journey...

TP Final Presentations

The stage is yours!

Farewell Brunch

What? Already?

Closing Ceremony

Get pinned!
Welcome to the space mafia!

Departure Day

No more crying! Please...