The Spaceward Foundation announced today the venue and timing for its annual Space Elevator games.
The event will be held at the Davis County Event Center just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah. The qualifying rounds will start on October 15, and the event will be open to the public between October 19 and October 21.
The Space Elevator competitions, marking their third year running, will feature more than 20 teams from around the country and the world, vying for $1,000,000 in cash prizes provided by NASA’s Centennial Challenges program.
“The Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development is thrilled to have the Spaceward Games in Utah this year,” said Gary Harter, Managing Director of Business Creation there. Barbara Riddle, director of the Davis area conventions shared his enthusiasm.
This year will feature a new technology competition — "Light Racers" — that allows kids and young adults to take part in a realistic lunar exploration scenario and win cash prizes for their performance. The competition is open to school, family, and grown-up teams. The Light Racers also serve as a science education platform for teaching basic science and math topics.
Meekk Shelef, president of the Spaceward Foundation: “We are thrilled to have added an educational component where kids can take part in the competition. Reaching out to the scientists and engineers of the future is the most important thing we can do.”
The Space Elevator games concentrate on two far-reaching technology concepts that will enable NASA to enhance its space program — power beaming for wireless power transfer, and Nano-materials such as Carbon Nanotubes for strong structures.
Ken Davidian, program manager for Centennial Challenges: “I am excited and impressed with the evolution and level of technical maturity demonstrated by the teams in both the Tether and Beam Power Challenges. Over the past 24 months, individual teams started from scratch, have grown continually, have coalesced into communities, and are on the verge of accomplishing substantial achievements worthy of a Centennial Challenges prize.”
Dr. Bradley C Edwards, the leading Space Elevator researcher and science advisor to the games: “The Space Elevator games, with their emphasis on strong tethers and power beaming, represent the road to building the Space Elevator. We hope their cumulative effect on the engineering community will enable further effort in this direction.”
“From what we have seen of the teams so far, we are looking forward to an exciting race to the finish this year,” said Ben Shelef, CEO of the Spaceward Foundation. “Third year’s a charm — we expect to be able to award the prize purse this year.”
The Space Elevator is a revolutionary Earth-to-Space transportation system proposed in 1960 by Yuri Artsutanov and enhanced in 2000 by Dr. Bradley Edwards, then at Los Alamos National Labs. The system is comprised of a stationary cable rotating in unison with the Earth, with one end anchored to the surface of the planet and the other end in space. Electric cars then travel up and down the cable, carrying cargo and people.
For more information on the competitions, visit: http://www.spaceward.org/, email ted [AT] spaceward.org, or call (630) 240-4797.
Press resources are located at http://www.spaceward.org/press/PR-2007-001.html.
The Spaceward Foundation is a public-funds non-profit organization dedicated to furthering space science and technology in the public mindshare and in educational curriculums. We believe that expanding mankind’s habitat is essential to its survival, and that the most effective way to induce long- term change is through education. Spaceward Foundation
CONTACT: Ted Semon of Spaceward Foundation, +1-630-240-4797, ted [AT] spaceward.org