Physics hosts space conference

The Physics Department, in partnership with UCF, is sponsoring the 2011 Next-Generation Suborbital Researchers Conference from Feb. 28 to March 2.

About 400 scientists, engineers, and educators from around the world will be listening to leaders of commercial and public institutions talk about a new generation of space vehicles capable of economically delivering payloads, experiments and tourists into space.

The three-day conference is jammed packed with educational and scientific briefings for registered participants as well as announcements by some of the companies building these new spaceships, such as Blue Origin, Masten Space Systems and Virgin Galactic.

“It’s an exciting new era for space exploration and we are poised to be a big part of it,” said Associate Professor Josh Colwell, a local organizer of the conference.

“This conference is a great opportunity for students, scientists, engineers, and educators to get the latest information and form partnerships for immediate and future opportunities.”

Several companies are building and testing spacecraft that may be able to launch as early as 2012. Colwell and a team of his students are in fact already preparing several experiments that are scheduled to fly aboard Blue Origin’s spacecraft, New Shepard.

Registration is necessary to attend the workshops, lectures and special presentations. For more information about the conference visit the website by going here.

UCF faculty, students, staff and community members are invited to attend the free public lecture at 8 pm on Feb. 28 in the Pegasus Ballroom. Learn about that event by going here:Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic company comes to UCF

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