Space Foundation Press Releases

25th National Space Symposium Breaks Records

Written by: developer

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (Apr. 9, 2009) — The Space Foundation’s 25th National Space Symposium, held last week, has broken records in attendance, international involvement, exhibitor participation, and educational involvement, underscoring the fact that the space industry is maintaining a relatively strong position, even in a difficult economy. The premier gathering of the global space community, the National Space Symposium is held each spring at The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs.

Almost 8,000 people, including speakers, attendees, exhibitors, teachers, students, volunteers, and journalists attended the four-day event, exceeding the Space Foundation’s estimates and surpassing previous years’ attendance. This included:

  • More than 70 influential speakers, including the Secretary of the Air Force, the Director of the National Reconnaissance Office, the Commander of Air Force Space Command, the Governor of Colorado, top space industry leaders, leading space scientists, former astronauts, futurist Alvin Toffler, and Bill Nye the Science Guy®;
  • Representation from international space agencies and organizations, including the European Space Agency, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), the European Commission, the International Space Station, Arianespace, and the China Manned Space Flight Team, which included Taikonaut Zhai Zhigang, who performed China’s first spacewalk during last year’s Shenzhou 7 Mission;
  • Representatives from more than 140 companies and organizations that filled two sold-out exhibit halls with state-of-the-art business displays that included an actual space capsule, stunning space video, and information on space technologies ranging from rocket design to launch capabilities to weather and avalanche prediction;
  • More than 100 PreK-12 teachers and school administrators and almost 1,500 students who participated in space-related science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) workshops and presentations;
  • More than 200 job-seeking college students and transitioning military who attended a day-long career fair that focused on space-related jobs throughout the country;
  • More than 250 volunteers from the local community, local military bases and across the country;
  • More than 100 local, national, and international journalists;
  • Almost 50 co-sponsor organizations, among them the founders and leaders of the nation’s space industry.

“The extraordinary turnout – in terms of both the number and the caliber of attendees – validates Space Foundation research and analysis findings about the strength and resiliency of the space industry during tough economic times,” said Space Foundation Chief Executive Officer Elliot Pulham. “We sincerely thank everyone involved in making this symposium our best ever. We look forward to an even bigger and better event next year.”

Pulham credited the growing diversity in the space business as one of the driving factors of the symposium’s success. “More than three quarters of our attendees were from the commercial space sector, which has been experiencing extraordinary growth as satellite-related technologies reach more and more mainstream consumers,” said Pulham. “Plus, this year we had a much stronger international showing, reflecting the growing number of nations participating in space programs and the ever-increasing global interdependence of players in the space economy.”

Next year’s event will be held April 12 – 15, 2010, at The Broadmoor.

Strength of Space Economy Outlined in The Space Report 2009; at Space Business Forum: New York
Referencing The Space Report 2009: the Authoritative Guide to the Space Industry, which was released on the first day of the 25th National Space Symposium, Pulham said that the space industry grew 2.5 percent in 2008 to $257 billion and is expected to continue to expand this year and beyond.

A thorough examination and analysis of the state of the space industry, The Space Report 2009 contains information on global space budgets and revenues, a yearly summary, and a number of new features, including:

  • A section examining trends in education and their impact on the space industry
  • Greatly expanded data on international (non-U.S.) space activities
  • A special report on astronomy and space science
  • New information on spaceports and spaceport authorities/coalitions

In conjunction with The Space Report 2009 release, the Space Foundation also launched two new indexes to help track public equity market space stocks:

  • The Space Foundation Infrastructure Index, which tracks performance of space-related hardware, software, and integration services for space-related applications
  • The Space Foundation Services Index, which tracks performance of companies that derive significant revenues from services that depend on space assets for collection, transmission, and/or provisioning

The new indexes compliment the Space Foundation Index, which tracks performance of public companies that derive a significant amount of revenue from space-related assets and activities. All three are updated daily on the Space Foundation’s Web site, at Copies of the The Space Report 2009 can be purchased at

The Space Foundation will continue to explore the health and outlook of the space economy on June 4, with its annual Space Business Forum: New York conference in New York City. For details on the conference, which is co-sponsored by Toffler Associates, see

25th National Space Symposium Co-Sponsors
The 25th National Space Symposium was supported by co-sponsors, including: Aerojet; The Aerospace Corporation; a.i. solutions; Analytical Graphics, Inc.; ATK; ARES Corporation; ASRC Federal; Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.; Boeing; Booz Allen Hamilton; Braxton Technologies; Cisco Systems, Inc.; Cobham; General Dynamics; Hitachi Consulting; Honeywell; IBM; Infinite Links; Integral Systems, Inc.; Intelsat General Corporation; International Space University; ITT; The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory; Landstar Carrier Group – Salt Lake City, UT; Lockheed Martin; The Mitre Corporation; Modern Technology Solutions, Inc.; New Mexico Space Grant; Northrop Grumman; Pikes Peak Workforce Center; Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne; Raytheon; Regis University; SAIC; SEAKR Engineering, Inc.; SERCO; Space Florida; SpaceX; Stellar Solutions; United Launch Alliance; United Space Alliance; the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs; and Webster University. Media partners were Aviation Week, Defense Systems, Space News, and Via Satellite.

About the Space Foundation
Founded in 1983, the Space Foundation is an international nonprofit organization advancing space-related endeavors to inspire, enable, and propel humanity. A leader in space awareness activities, major industry events, and educational enterprises that bring space into the classroom, the Space Foundation is headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo. It conducts research and analysis and government affairs activities from its Washington, D.C., office and has field representatives in Houston, Texas, and Cape Canaveral, Fla. In addition to the National Space Symposium, the Space Foundation, along with partnering organizations, will also conduct Space Business Forum: New York on June 4, 2009, in New York, N.Y., and an event with the United States Strategic Command this fall in Omaha, Neb. For more information, visit