28th National Space Symposium

The premier gathering of space professionals in the world, the 28th National Space Symposium and its companion Cyber 1.2 event were held April 16-19 at The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs.


  • The largest number of exhibitors ever - more than 165, including 42 first-time participants - in the Ball Aerospace Exhibit Center and Pavilion.
  • More than 9,000 participants, including registrants, speakers, volunteers, exhibitors and visitors, representing more than 800 organizations.
  • Almost 40 nations represented, including speakers and exhibitors, our first international Teacher Liaison and our first-ever non-U.S. inductee into the Space Technology Hall of Fame®.
  • Presentation of prestigious Space Foundation awards.
  • An extraordinary slate of speakers and panelists representing the top levels in government, industry, civil space, science, personal spaceflight and academia.
  • The most diverse group of co-sponsors in our history.
  • Announcement of $375,000 in funding from Northrop Grumman for the Northrop Grumman Science Center at our world headquarters.

On the Agenda...

From the rousing Colorado Springs Philharmonic performance at the Opening Ceremony to the inspiring examples of the benefits of space to humankind at the Space Technology Hall of Fame Dinner, the 28th National Space Symposium provided thought-provoking, entertaining and motivational content, including:

  • A stirring plea for public and government re-engagement with space by Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Hayden Planetarium, bestselling author and host of COSMOS
  • Ample discussion of industry concerns, accomplishments and challenges - including a humorous take on space from author, satirist and Space Foundation Board Member P.J. O'Rourke.
  • Perspectives from multiple branches of the U.S. military, the United States Strategic Command, the Federal Aviation Administration, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the U.S. Departments of Defense and State.
  • Viewpoints from space agencies and ministries from around the world, representing the U.S., Canada, France, Japan, the United Kingdom, Mexico, the Netherlands and Germany.
  • More focus than ever on the large - and growing - satellite portion of the space industry. 
  • A rousing discussion among some of the brightest and most intriguing intellects in the science world. 
  • Three special luncheons: the Warfighters Luncheon, celebrating the men and women who serve in the military around the world; an "issues luncheon" concentrating on national security acquisition strategies; and a Colorado space industry luncheon.
  • Discussions of the societal, environmental, national security and economic benefits of space, the need to inspire young people to pursue space careers, hosted payloads, the future of personal spaceflight and the growing need for international military collaboration.

Inspiration for the Future....

In addition to providing an interchange of the most up-to-date space information and opportunities for networking and collaboration among space professionals, the 28th National Space Symposium was filled with programs designed to educate and inspire the next generation of space professionals:

  • More than 70 Space Foundation Teacher Liaisons participated in a professional development workshop and Space Symposium events.
  • Experienced Teacher Liaisons visited the Space Foundation Discovery Institute and the U.S. Air Force Academy.
  • More than 350 students toured the Ball Aerospace Exhibit Center. 
  • 485 students participated in off-site Audience with an Astronaut presentations.
  • Almost 300 students from National Space Grant universities and transitioning military participated in Space Career Day.
  • Almost twice as many New Generation young space professionals attended than in previous years and were treated to formal networking sessions, targeted workshops and special sessions, as well as access to Space Symposium general sessions and the Ball Aerospace Exhibit Center.
  • The first-ever Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC) Fusion Forum held in conjunction with the Space Symposium provided 50 young adults from government, industry and academia with targeted presentations from international industry leaders and access to the New Generation networking sessions and the Opening Ceremony; more than half stayed on for the full Space Symposium, which included a presentation on the outcome of the Fusion Forum.

Cyber 1.2

The Space Foundation's major cyberspace activity is a one-day meeting that precedes the National Space Symposium. The 2012 Cyber 1.2 event featured discussions focusing on:

  • Risk mitigating strategies and enterprise solutions.
  • The need for speed, creative ideas and multinational industry/government collaboration to address the dynamic cyber threat environment.
  • The need for enhanced situational awareness, mobility, secure infrastructure, secure applications and training. 
  • Differentiating "need to know" from "right to share," including reducing the amount of information that is classified.
  • Managing cyber defense by gathering information on both attacks and the nature of attacks.
  • The economic impact of cybersecurity.

See What Happened

Photos and videos covering the entire event are posted on the Space Foundation website: www.spacefoundation.org/media