The International Space Elevator Consortium (ISEC), an independent group designed to promote standards and foster research relating to the construction of an Elevator to Space, has announced its first annual set of prizes, named after the co-inventors of the modern-day concept of the Space Elevator, Jerome Pearson and Yuri Artsutanov.
Formed in 2008 by a coalition of leaders in the Space Elevator movement, ISEC has established these prizes to encourage research into Space Elevator related technologies and concepts to help further ISEC’s mission of promoting “the development, construction and operation of a space elevator as a revolutionary and efficient way to space for all humanity”.
Ted Semon, the president of ISEC states; “We are thrilled to be able to offer these awards, named after the co-inventors of the modern-day concept of the Space Elevator. The Space Elevator, a ‘carbon railway’ to the solar system and beyond, is the right way to open up space to all humanity. With research into carbon nanotubes proceeding at an ever-accelerating rate, we think that it is only a matter of a few years before the material necessary to build a space elevator will be available. The time is now to begin serious planning for this most magnificent concept.”
Each year, ISEC selects a focal theme for its activities. For 2010, this theme is “Space Debris Mitigation”. One of the major hurdles that must be overcome in order to successfully build and operate a Space Elevator is avoiding space debris and satellites in orbit. While much research has been done on this topic, the goal for most existing research has been mitigating the problem of space debris in relation to satellites, the ISS, the Shuttle, etc.
The Pearson prize will be awarded for that paper which best addresses the topic of Space Debris Mitigation in relation to a Space Elevator and is open to all college undergraduate students currently enrolled in a two or four-year undergraduate curriculum.
The Artsutanov prize will be awarded for the best paper on any other Space Elevator-related topic and is open to everyone1.
The winning paper of the Pearson prize will be awarded $1,500 while the winning paper of the Artsutanov prize will be awarded $2,500. Both winners will be invited to the 2010 Space Elevator conference (held this coming August in Redmond, Washington) to present their papers. Their papers will also be published in the ISEC Journal. In addition to awarding the prize money, ISEC will pay for airfare and hotel accommodations for the prize-winners (maximum of one per paper if multiple authors).
Contest details can be found on the ISEC website (http://www.isec.info).
For more details, please contact ISEC President Ted Semon (), Prize Chair Peter Swan () or ISEC Technical Pillar Lead Ben Shelef ().
Headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., a leading technology center, the International Space Elevator Consortium (ISEC) is a non-profit organization devoted to the research and construction of an Elevator to Space. Founding members of ISEC include the Spaceward Foundation, the 1 – Directors and officers of ISEC and their immediate family members are not eligible. Space Elevator Reference, the Space Elevator Blog, EuroSpaceward and the Japan Space Elevator Association. For more information please visit http://www.isec.info. .