Status Report

NSS Online Report Issue #7

By SpaceRef Editor
October 10, 2000
Filed under

Inside this issue:

  • SS Offers $10 Introductory Membership for One Month Only
  • Last Chance to Register for International Space Symposium and NSS Breakfast
  • Voters’ Guide Provides Easy Links to Candidates on the Internet
  • NSS Chapters Stand Out at Science Fiction Convention
  • ISDC 2001 Conference Summary and Registration Survey Posted
  • Capital Capsules Provide Insight on Halting of Pluto/Kuiper Express



For the next month, NSS is offering newcomers a one year membership for
only $10. That’s 50% below the special introductory rate of $20 offered from
time to time at events and in mail solicitations. The offer is only good until
election day, and new members must join via the NSS web site. The “election
special” membership gets new members all the usual benefits, including one year
subscriptions to Ad Astra and the NSS Online Report. The special rate is being
offered so space activists will be able to make their voice heard as campaign
2000 draws to a close.

For more details on all the benefits of NSS membership, interested space
enthusiasts can be directed to

The secure membership form can be located from this page, or accessed
directly at In the “Membership Type” list
box, “Election Special” should be selected for the $10 rate.


On October 24th, please join the National Space Society, in cooperation
with the Space Foundation, in kicking off the International Space Symposium at a
breakfast seminar featuring some of the newest space media companies and
entrepreneurs. This event will give attendees an opportunity to hear from the
companies with plans under development to broadcast from space via the
International Space Station and Mir space station. Projects to commercialize
space station data and imagery, as well as NASA archives, will also be
discussed. Learn about the latest developments on media projects in space.

Presentations are expected from MirCorp, Space Media Inc.,, Kodak, and Dreamtime. This event will also
provide an excellent opportunity for networking and dialogue about this new
development in space commerce.

The breakfast will take place on Tuesday, October 24, from 8:00 a.m. –
10:00 a.m. at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center, Washington, D.C.
(nearest metro stop: Federal Triangle). The cost is $25. To register or for more
information, visit, email, call 202-543-1900, or fax
to 202-546-4189.

The International Space Symposium (ISS) will take place at the Ronald
Reagan International Trade Center October 24-26, 2000. This event will feature
government and industry speakers from around the world, panel discussions, and
exhibits addressing a wide range of commercial space topics, including remote
sensing, launch vehicle services, and satellite communications. Registration
for the ISS is separate from the NSS breakfast registration and is not required
for attending the NSS event. For more information on the ISS program and
registration, visit Seating is limited: book early to
be assured a seat at this “state of the art” briefing.


The NSS Campaign 2000 Voters’ Guide, now online at, provides easy access to information on Presidential
and Congressional candidates. By selecting regions and states on a map of the
USA, anyone with access to the Internet can quickly find links to candidates’
web sites and email boxes. With only a month left until the election, now is
the time to ask the candidates about their space policies and share that
information with other NSS members. Only by making an informed decision on
November 7 can NSS members ensure that a bright future in space lies ahead.


National Space Society, through its Chicago Space Frontier L5 and
Illinois North Shore NSS chapters, had a prominent presence at the 58th World
Science Fiction Convention (“Chicon 2000”), held in Chicago on August 30 through
September 4 with more than 5700 attendees.

NSS Governor BEN BOVA was author guest of honor. NSS Director LARRY
AHEARN served as chair of the science track programming, which included about
thirty space and astronomy programs among the almost 70 science and technology
topics. NSS Vice President and Director JEFFREY LISS participated on five of
those panels, and Ahearn took part in seven. Among the topics addressed were
Moon and Mars colonization, space tourism, space law, commercial and private
space ventures, space transportation, and colonizing the cold planets.

NSS also had an exhibit table at Chicon, with a TV/VCR showing space
videos that helped draw hundreds of visitors. The table had Gravity Bricks
(designed by PETER KOKH, President of NSS’s Lunar Reclamation Society chapter in
Milwaukee) and an Apollo era space suit. The table also held a display for
NSS’s 2001 International Space Development Conference, handouts from NSS HQ and
the Chicago Area Chapters, and a list of web space references prepared by NSS
Director ROBERT GOUNLEY for NSS’s OASIS chapter in Los Angeles. There were also
Moon and Venus Globes. The terraformed Mars globe was transferred to the art
show area, but well worth checking out. The table was staffed by Larry Ahearn
and GERALDINE HARACZ. Geri also did space suit demonstrations and walked about
the main area of the convention in the suit to draw attention.

The NSS members also had two TV interviews, including one for Fox Thing
in the Morning, a couple of public radio interviews, and at least two print
media interviews. Also, many photos of the table and NSS members were taken by
convention participants and others. Sixteen attendees joined NSS on the spot,
thanks to personal recruiting by Ahearn, Liss, Haracz and former Director KAREN
MERMEL, and more than a thousand NSS flyers were handed out.


A summary of plans for the 20th International Space Development
Conference has been posted on the conference web site at In additional to some details about planned
events, the summary contains general items of interest to new members or first-
time ISDC attendees. The conference will be held from May 24-28, 2001 in
Albuquerque, New Mexico.

A survey has also been added to the bottom of the mail-in registration
form at New registrants should submit the form
along with the conference fee (only $75 for NSS members). Those who have
already registered are also encouraged to send in the survey, which addresses
interest in the planned tours and banquets.


The recently-released Volume 4, Number 7 of NSS’s Capitol Capsules
provides some insight into the stop work order recently issued for the
Pluto/Kuiper Express mission. NASA Associate Administrator for Space Science
Dr. Edward Weiler recently suspended funding for the mission to the last
unexplored planet in our Solar System. Weiler cited the growing cost of the
Pluto/Kuiper Express and Europa Orbiter missions, which were being developed
jointly, as justification for the replan. The cost of the two missions had
doubled over the past two years to $1.4 billion. Weiler told members of
Congress that NASA will continue to pursue a Pluto mission, possibly taking
advantage of a gravity assist opportunity extending into 2002. For the full
story, go to

Capitol Capsules are timely reports of highlights and statements from
Capitol Hill hearings and other events involving space issues. The Capsules,
published as events warrant by NSS Headquarters, can be found below the press
releases on the NSS Alerts web page at


It is my very sad duty to inform the NSS membership that Claire Ikin, the wife
of the Chairman of the NSS Board of Directors, passed away on October 4 after
battling cancer for several months. – Pat Dasch, Executive Director.


NSS Online Report

Issue #7 / October 6, 2000

Editor: Joshua Powers (

National Space Society

600 Pennsylvania Avenue, S.E. — Suite 201 — Washington, DC 20003

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