To Space

A space art performance premiered at SSP15

The Space Studies Program is open to people from very diverse backgrounds, as long as they have a passion for space. Niamh Shaw, an Irish SSP15 participant, is a scientist and engineer, who in her later career focused on the performing arts to express her passion for space. Her new 'To Space' performance saw its final rehearsal during SSP15 in Athens, before premiering at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe at Summerhall a week later. Please find snippets of the final show, and an interview with performer Niamh Shaw here:

De-orbit and Re-entry

LEEDS, UK, 15 August 2015, by Helen Freeman - The last week!! Focused on team project work with a few light evening activities to rest the brain. On Friday we had a toga party (apparently it's an ISU tradition). And on Saturday we had the talent night, which was good fun and a welcome break from editing.

SSP15 deorbit and reentry

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Closing with a bang!

ISU SSP 15 - Blog 9th week

ATHENS, OHIO, 8 August 2015, by Francesca Moretto - The last week of SSP is always the most intense one. Participants start their countdown for the end of the TP, and they don’t have time to realize that after the TP presentation day everything is over.

TP Vision 2040

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SSP15 is GO for Launch!

ATHENS, OHIO, 8 June 2015, by Remco Timmermans - The ISU Space Studies Program got the official GO for Launch! An impressive opening ceremony last Monday marked the beginning of an intense 9 weeks mission for the 98-strong crew of participants, who arrived at the Ohio University launch site last weekend. SSP15 Mission Director John Connolly, as well as several VIP guests welcomed the crew during the opening ceremony at the Walter Hall Rotunda.

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After bringing in all 30 nations' flags, participants were addressed by ISU president Dr. Walter Peeters, Ohio University president Dr. Roderick McDavis, Russ College Dean Dr. Dennis Irwin, NASA Glenn Research Center Director James Free and special guest NASA Astronaut and US Navy Captain Sunita Williams.

Just before this opening ceremony the official SSP Class of 2015 picture was taken, which will soon be added to the ISU Central Campus "Wall of Fame" in Strasbourg, France.

SSP15 Group Picture

 Photo credit: Shripathy Hadigal

SSP15: A Dream Coming True

My Space Studies Program 2015 Experience 

ATHENS, OHIO, 5 August 2015, by Tisho Dimitrov - I am laying at the golf court next to Adams Hall on this beautiful afternoon on the 5th of August 2015. I am in Athens, Ohio, in the United States. It is afternoon and I have just done my last laundry during my nine weeks stay here. I talked to my friends Oshri from Israel, Lars from the Netherlands and Nick from Canada, while waiting for our laundry. This morning we rehearsed our Team Project final presentations for tomorrow and had a briefing by John Connolly for our Closing Ceremony the day after tomorrow. These final presentations mark the end of the Space Studies Program that I am enrolled in. John is the director of this Program. After the briefing I took a walk in uptown Athens, taking several photos of the surroundings, breathed fresh air and admired everything around me. Every small detail. I entered a clothing shop where they sell t-shirts with cool Ohio signs. I will buy several of those for my friends back in Bulgaria. They will love these presents! On my way back to Adams Hall (where we live) I met my friend Louis from the UK, who was resting on the ground, enjoying the Wednesday afternoon sun. Then just before entering Adams Hall I met Ryan from Canada and we exchanged a quick “Hey, how is it going?”

SSP15 Tisho 02 new

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Tracking Fracking in Ohio and beyond

The story of an incredible ISU SSP team project

ATHENS, OHIO, 1 August 2015, by Remco Timmermans - An incredible roller coaster, with a few unexpected turns and more highlights than anyone could expect. That pretty much describes SSP15 Team Project Tracking Fracking. A project about the hydraulic fracturing oil and gas exploration boom in the state of Ohio. Hardly a space related project you might say. The initiator of the project thought differently. Attempts to measure environmental effects of fracking in Ohio from the ground have been running into a lot of practical and bureaucratic issues. In addition, individual oil and gas wells only contribute very small amounts of pollutants. Only when adding up the combined pollution of hundreds or thousands of wells the vastness of the problem becomes visible. This is where the space element kicks in.

TP Tracking Fracking executive summary

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Space Policy, Economics and Law Department 2015

The Fourth Battlefield

ATHENS, OHIO, 4 August 2015, by Francesca Moretto - Space has effectively become 'the fourth battlefield', an increasingly hazardous geopolitical landscape filled with co-operation, access, security and sustainability issues. As new players have entered the space arena, there is an increasing need for regulation of rapidly expanding global space activities. Space has become increasingly competitive, contested, multifaceted and interdependent. Security continues to be a major concern for all nations, just as it was for the architects of the Outer Space Treaty (OST) initially negotiating Space Law principles. These principles, incorporated into the OST, sometimes referred to as a ‘constitution for space’, reflect the binary nature of the geopolitical interests which dominated the cold war and leaves limits the scope for commercial expansion.

ISU SSP15 PEL Department 640

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TA Blog Week 6

Intensity is the Name of the Game

ATHENS, OHIO, 20 July 2015, by Graeme TaylorIntensity was the name of the game for week six. Marking the culmination of the departments, a host of climactic activities were on the agenda for the participants throughout the seven specialist areas, including presenting their departmental projects in their various forms, as well as a couple of field trips for some, a theme day, the final elective workshop and final public event of SSP15: the rocket launch.

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TA Blog week 5

Full Throttle at the Halfway Point

ATHENS, OHIO, 12 July 2015, by Andree-Anne Parent and Remco Timmermans - The fifth week is a week of changing gears. The core lectures are finally over and the exams have passed. Team projects are beginning to take shape and participants are getting comfortable in their departments. In the case of SSP15 it is also the week of our big field trip! The program this year is co-hosted by the NASA Glenn center, so the entire SSP is moved to Cleveland for two full days of tours and activities at NASA.

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What is going on during Week 7? Life after the departments

Planetary Defender, Tracker or Visionary: choose your side!

ATHENS, OHIO, 27 July 2015, by Erika Kupper, Teaching Associate of Human Performance in Space - After having tasted the adrenaline of the departmental activities, it was time for our participants to start focusing deeply and exclusively on their team project. The beginning of week 7 just started, but the traditional – and friendly - competition of “which Team Project is the best” was already declared. This year, three teams defended their honor and they all presented their work successfully during the internal review. Those teams are The Planetary Defenders, The Trackers, and The Visionaries. Keep up the good work guys and may the best TP win!

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Houston, we have a party!

SSP15 Space Masquerade

Athens, Ohio, 11 July 2015, by Remco Timmermans - Ever since the first toga party at SSP88 the space masquerade has been a classic element of every Space Studies Program. Work hard, play hard! Traditionally the space masquerade coincides with the ISU Alumni Weekend, adding even more space professionals to the party. Despite week 6 being one of the busiest in the entire program, participants, staff and alumni mysteriously found time and energy for an awesome creative outburst. Check out the SSP15 ComiCon:

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All SSP15 Special Event Replays

Listing all SSP15 special event videos

Many of the SSP15 special evening events were broadcasted live via webcast and were recorded at the same time. Some of these recordings are available through the normal ISU video channel, but others were posted on channels of Ohio University. This list brings them all together, so you can easily choose your favorite event to replay.

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Attention for Detail

Little things make a big Space Studies Program

The devil is in the detail. A very true statement for any engineering project, ranging from IKEA furniture to Space Shuttles to Space Studies Programs. In addition, some of the best memories are in the smallest things. Plenty of reasons for this blog post to kneel down into the little things that make SSP15 to arguably be the best Space Studies Program ever!

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SSP15 Astronaut Panel

Our Envoys to the Stars

Athens, Ohio, 17 June 2015, by Ramasamy Venugopal - The International Astronaut Panel is now a regular affair at the ISU Space Studies Program. Last year, we introduced a unique panel of women astronauts which was a tremendous hit with the audience. The bar was high, but this year we were up to the task. The SSP’15 astronaut panel was not just international but spanned the entire duration of the human space exploration era. It is not every day that one is present among explorers who have flown on the Space Shuttle, the International Space Station and walked on the Moon.

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SSP15 Week 1 - Participant Blog

SSP15 week one - Increase the Awesome

Athens, Ohio, 6 June 2015, by Vera Gutman - On a sunny Saturday morning we arrived in Athens, Ohio at the green and beautiful campus of Ohio University. We were greeted by the highly interesting staff of ISU SSP15 who welcomed us by waving from the first floor balcony of Adams Hall, our home for the next nine weeks. Coming down from the bus we got a welcoming handshake from John Connolly, SSP15 director.

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A virtual tour through Athens

#Instawalk in Athens, Ohio

ATHENS, 21 July 2015, by Remco Timmermans - Very popular among Instagram users is the so-called #Instawalk, where Instagram users walk around a city, capturing the essence and beauty of the place. With the rapidly rising popularity of Instagram in 2015 I thought it would be a nice idea to do an #Instawalk at our host university and city. So here are Ohio University and the city of Athens in 16 pictures, starting at Adams Hall, our residence for the program. All pictures previously posted on Instagram:

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