Our Vision: People living and working in thriving communities beyond the Earth, and the use of the vast resources of space for the dramatic betterment of humanity.
The Society publishes Ad Astra magazine and maintains an active global network of volunteers and local chapters. Membership and participation are open to all. Join the space movement, and help build a positive future for humanity!
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Benefit eBay Auction to Name Martian Crater the Size of Florida
(Washington, D.C., December 8) The National Space Society and Uwingu are excited to announce a partnership for a first of its kind auction. Uwingu and eBay will be auctioning the naming rights to the biggest unnamed crater on Mars with 25% of the proceeds benefiting the National Space Society. The auction will run until Monday December 15th at 4:49pm Mountain Time.
Join the NSS Leadership Team – Respond by December 31
(Washington, D.C., December 4) The NSS 2014 Leadership Search Committee is seeking volunteer candidates with the time, talent, and motivation to serve as a member, Secretary, or Chair on an NSS operating committee. Superior candidates will also be considered for an Officer position. Respond via firstname.lastname@example.org by December 31 to be considered for nomination by the Executive Committee.
See the full announcement for details and links to committee and officer descriptions.
NSS Highlights Contribution of Japanese Hayabusa 2 Asteroid Mission to Space Settlement
(Washington, D.C., December 3) NSS congratulates the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) on the successful launch of Hayabusa 2 on December 2, 2014, at 11:22 PM EST. Hayabusa 2 is planned to arrive at asteroid 1999 JU3 in July 2018, gather samples for about a year and one half, and return those samples to the Earth in 2020. Hayabusa 2 sports many improvements over the first Hayabusa probe, and carries a MASCOT Lander and three MINERVA Rovers.
A sample return from Asteroid 1999 JU3, a C-type (carbonaceous) asteroid, represents a major advance in our understanding of the availability and distribution of resources in the solar system. C-type asteroids are believed to contain sources of water, which can be used both to sustain human life in space, as well as to provide rocket fuel and store energy for later generation of electricity via fuel cells.
NSS Executive Vice President Paul Werbos summed up the situation: “We congratulate JAXA on the successful launch of Hayabusa 2, and wish them much success on this vital mission. Japan is to be commended for a steady focus on challenging robotic asteroid missions that are helping to bring the human settlement of space a bit closer.”
See full press release.
Astronaut Lunar Ambassadors 45th Anniversary Splashdowns
(Washington, D.C., November 24) The 45th anniversaries of the Apollo lunar missions are now upon us and the National Space Society (NSS) is honoring the heroic accomplishments of these brave lunar astronauts. Monday, November 24, 2014, is the 45th anniversary of the return-to-Earth splashdown of Apollo 12, the second mission to land people on the Moon.
NSS hereby announces that it is granting the title of “Lunar Ambassador” to the crew members of the first two Apollo lunar landing missions. “NSS is proud to extend this honor to our pioneering Apollo astronauts who have led humanity’s advance into space,” said Mark Hopkins, chair of the NSS Executive Committee.
See full press release.
National Space Society Encourages Virgin Galactic To Press On
(Washington, D.C., October 31) The National Space Society (NSS) extends its support to Virgin Galactic and Scaled Composites over the tragic loss of SpaceShipTwo and offers its heartfelt sympathy to the families involved and to everyone who worked on that program.
“We are extremely honored that Virgin Galactic CEO George Whitesides served on the NSS team as our Executive Director and we all stand by him in this time of difficulty,” said Mark Hopkins, Chairman of the NSS Executive Committee. “We expect that the cause of the accident will be found and fixed so that the Virgin Galactic dream of ‘opening space to tens of thousands of people’ can become a reality.”
See full press release.
SPACE IS OUR FUTURE: A Campaign for Space
The National Space Society (NSS) has initiated a campaign to explain the importance and wonder of space exploration and development. To support this campaign, NSS conducted a Kickstarter project to produce a short, compelling video that explains the great things we can do in space, and why they matter. Focusing on the exciting new opportunities that are now appearing, the video includes interviews with a wide range of space proponents, from artists to astronauts, scientists to students, engineers to entrepreneurs. They all explain, in their own words, why space is important to them and to humanity, and how everyone can be involved. Their passion is evident, and typifies NSS's commitment. The video is intended to be used with a wide range of audiences, from students to investors, civic groups and Congressional representatives, and explains why "Space Is Our Future". The video consists of several independent segments that are shown here together in one 15-minute video.
National Space Society Launches “Enterprise In Space”
(Washington, D.C., September 29) The National Space Society (NSS) is launching a new project called “Enterprise In Space” (EIS). This project will design, build, launch, orbit, re-enter, tour, and display a science-fiction-inspired satellite as a science education and technology demonstration project for all ages and as a tribute to the great visionaries of science and science fiction.
Famed Apollo 11 moonwalker and NSS Governor Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin endorses EIS: “There’s an exciting new project called Enterprise In Space that I want to tell you about. Together with the National Space Society, the Enterprise In Space project will launch an eight-foot Enterprise satellite into orbit and bring it back to Earth. This is an educational and inspirational tribute to all Enterprise ships in history, to science visionaries, and to the vision of the Great Bird of the Galaxy himself, Gene Roddenberry. My name has been to space and back. Now it’s your turn. Rendezvous with me and support the Enterprise in Space project. Help make history all over again.”
See full press release.
National Space Society Praises Inclusion of Competition in NASA’s Commercial Crew Decision
(Washington, D.C., September 18) NSS has been a consistent supporter of competition in NASA’s Commercial Crew program to ferry astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS). NSS today congratulates the winners of the Commercial Crew competition, Boeing and SpaceX. NSS also thanks NASA for its diligent efforts to maintain real competition in the Commercial Crew program.
NSS Executive Vice President Paul Werbos summed up the situation: “This is a great moment for Boeing, SpaceX, and NASA. The door to the American future in space is opening wider, and we need to ensure that Commercial Crew is fully funded to keep it that way.”
See full press release.
NSS Joins Successful Integrated Space Plan Kickstarter
(Washington, D.C., July 27) The National Space Society became a $500 logo backer to the “Integrated Space Plan” Kickstarter and encouraged NSS members to help this Kickstarter effort reach its goal.
The “Integrated Space Plan” project is to remake, maintain, and expand the uses of the Integrated Space Plan, a graphically detailed timeline of our future in space for the next 100 years. NSS leader Ronnie Lajoie writes "The five team leaders are all NSS members, including Jay Wittner, a past NSS Officer and Director, and current chapter officer. The ISP will complement and supplement our Roadmap to Space Settlement."
Jay Wittner writes "20 years ago a detailed long term plan was created showing what was needed to develop a robust space infrastructure. It was called the Integrated Space Plan (ISP). It was an early infographic developed to depict our future in space. The original plan by Ron Jones was a hit in the space community and it's time to update the ISP and post it online so everyone can see the path forward!" Ron Jones is part of the new team.
NSS leader Gary Barnhard adds "While no one has a monopoly on insight into the future, the combination of perspectives should be integratable into a common framework which provides a context for understanding where we have been, where we are, and where we could go."
Thank you to all NSS members who supported this Kickstarter.
National Space Society Calls for Less U.S. Dependence on Russian Space Technology
(Washington, D.C., July 15) The Washington DC-based National Space Society (NSS) strongly recommends in a position paper issued today that Congress should fully support the Commercial Crew program in order to restore independent access to the International Space Station (ISS), prepare to operate the ISS without Russian support, again make low-cost access to space a primary goal of U.S. space policy, and avoid replacing the RD-180 engine manufactured in Russia with a single new engine funded via cost-plus development.
Paul Werbos, NSS Executive Vice President, said “The U.S. space program has become far too dependent on Russian technology. It is long past time to change that situation.”
NSS Officer and Director Lynne Zielinski Receives Alan Shepard Technology in Education Award
(Washington DC May 5) Lynne F. Zielinski, National Space Society (NSS) officer and director has been selected by the Astronauts Memorial Foundation (AMF), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the Space Foundation as recipient of the Alan Shepard Technology in Education Award.
Zielinski, a retired physics, astronomy and space science teacher from Glenbrook North High School in Northbrook, Ill., was selected for the award for her work with the Glenbrook Aerospace Development Get-away Experiment Team (GADGET) program, which she founded 22 years ago. The program enables students to design and conduct microgravity experiments, initiate and direct aerospace and engineering research, develop spaceflight hardware and design space settlements. The GADGET program flew active experiments on six space shuttle flights, nine NASA Nike-Orion sub-orbital rockets, three Zero-G airplane flights, and four high altitude balloon missions. See full press release.