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Adelaide joins race for 2024 International Astronautical Congress


After the success of the 2017 IAC in South Australia, the Andy Thomas Space Foundation is working to win it back to further enhance Australia’s space capabilities.

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The team that won the 2017 IAC for Adelaide, and subsequently helped launch Australia’s return to space, is pitching to again host the major congress in Adelaide, South Australia.

Space Lawyer Michael Davis AO and Adj. Professor Nicola Sasanelli AM, who both drove the 2017 bid and successful congress, are the chair and CEO respectively of the Andy Thomas Space Foundation which they formed last year to further the space industry in Australia.

Davis said they were using the foundation – named after Australia’s first astronaut – as a platform to bid for the congress because a goal of the foundation is to “promote national education and outreach programs and to conduct major space-related forums”.

The 2017 IAC was lauded as a success and was credited for being the impetus for the establishment of the Australian Space Agency.

The congress, attended by 4470 delegates, also featured Elon Musk outlining his BFR plans for supersonic travel and a launch for Mars.

“The 2017 Congress inspired impressive growth in the Australian space sector, including the establishment of the Australian Space Agency, the SmartSat CRC and the Andy Thomas Space Foundation, all headquartered in Adelaide,” Sasanelli said.

“A congress in 2024 will be a great boost to the goal of the Australian Space Agency to grow the number of jobs in the national space industry to 30,000 by 2030.”

Davis said the opportunity to host the five-day 2024 IAC was also due to Australia’s thriving space sector, international regard for Adelaide’s COVID-19 response, and Adelaide’s low- density lifestyle.

The pair is being supported by the Adelaide Convention Bureau, which successfully bid for the 2017 event, and its Chief Executive Damien Kitto.

“We showed the world and some fierce competitors – including Washington, Bremen and Istanbul – just what an amazing destination Adelaide was when we hosted the highly successful 2017 Congress; now we intend to do so again – only better,” Kitto said.

Adelaide will go up against Milan and Budapest in the six-stage bidding process before the host city is announced at the 2021 IAC in Dubai in late October.

This is a Creative Commons story from The Lead South Australia, a news service providing stories about innovation in South Australia. Please feel free to use the story in any form of media. The story sources are linked in with the copy and all contacts are willing to talk further about the story. Copied to Clipboard

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