Space Force Hosts First University Consortium Symposium > United States Space Force > News

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado– The Space Force hosted the first University Consortium (UC) Symposium in Colorado Springs this August.

During the event, the Space Force Office of Science, Technology and Research met with 27 universities and industry leaders to discuss how the service plans to address various areas of interest to the nation. Together, the group defined key areas for science and technology growth over the next decade by establishing three Strategic Technology Institutes (STIs).

These institutes can include a combination of universities, industry, and non-profit organizations from across the country that combine their collective expertise to enhance space capabilities. The first of these STIs are:

  • xGEO and Space Domain Awareness STI – The focus will be on technologies required to ensure secure, sustainable global opportunity and growth in the region of space beyond geostationary orbits.
  • In-Space Maintenance and Manufacturing STI – Focus will be on in-space capabilities including but not limited to maintenance (inspection, life extension, repair or modification of a spacecraft, rendezvous, proximity operations, docking, refueling or repositioning), assembly (construction in space using prefabricated components); and manufacturing (converting raw or recycled materials into products in space).
  • Advanced Remote Sensing STI – The focus will be on sensor capabilities that enable better situational awareness through novel phenomenologies, techniques, hardware and software while increasing accuracy and reducing weight and power requirements in space

The symposium also brought together several small companies and start-ups for an intensive dialogue with universities. These discussions focused on research needs, student workforce readiness, and technology transfer. Technology transfer to industry, programs of records or other government partners is the ultimate goal of any STI.

Space Force plans to openly and competitively solicit a call for proposals on these STIs in March 2023, with proposals due by April 2023. Proposals selected by Space Force would be announced as early as June.

The next UC symposium is scheduled to update on these efforts and will be held at the end of March. Dates and location will be announced in January 2023.

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