Von Braun Symposium and Memorial Dinner to welcome aerospace executives and leaders

Wernher von Braun Memorial Symposium

The theme of the 2022 Wernher von Braun Memorial Symposium is “Space at the Table: Collaboration, Cooperation, and Inclusion.”

Michael Mercier / UAH

Leading government officials, industry executives, academia and others from the aerospace community will gather at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH), a part of the University of Alabama System, for the 15th annual Wernher von Braun Memorial Symposium on Oct. 26-28.

This year’s theme is “Space at the Table: Collaboration, Cooperation, and Inclusion.” Organized by the American Astronautical Society, in collaboration with NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, UAH and the Huntsville Chapter of the National Space Club, the symposium aims to discuss relevant topics on the latest developments and future opportunities and challenges in space exploration, and the important contributions needed through broad participation from across the U.S. and around the globe.

“UAH is honored to host the annual Wernher von Braun Memorial Symposium," says UAH Vice President for Research and Economic Development Robert Lindquist. "The symposium is a place to gain insight into the future of space exploration, and it represents a unique opportunity for our students and faculty to engage with the scientists, engineers and administrators who define the future role of the U.S. in space."

UAH President Chuck Karr and NASA Marshall Space Flight Center Director Jody Singer will join Alan DeLuna, president of the American Astronautical Society, to deliver opening remarks at 9 a.m. on Oct. 26.

The Oct. 26 luncheon keynote speaker is NASA Deputy Administrator Pamela Melroy, who will speak at 12:20 p.m. The Friday luncheon keynote speakers are Carissa Christensen, founder and CEO of BryceTech, and Alex MacDonald, NASA chief economist.

Topics to be discussed at the gathering of space industry leaders and colleagues include:

  • A coordinated approach to U.S. Space Policy
  • A new era of deep space exploration being ushered in by NASA’s Artemis Program
  • Lunar Landing Systems and sustaining a human presence beyond low Earth orbit
  • Revolutionizing space travel times
  • Enabling commercial activities in low Earth orbit and beyond
  • Recent highlights inspiring a bright future for NASA science
  • Building the future STEM workforce

The National Space Club Huntsville’s annual, sold out Von Braun Memorial Dinner will be held at 7 p.m. on Oct. 26 at the Von Braun Center South Hall in Huntsville. The dinner welcomes local businesses and space enthusiasts to celebrate “scholarships and award recipients” who are helping to shape the future of space exploration.

The event honors selected individuals and groups by awarding the Von Braun Space Flight Trophy, the Astronautics Engineering Award, the Distinguished Science Award, the Communications Award, the Community Service Award, the Aerospace Educator Award, the Dr. Wernher von Braun Memorial Scholarship, and the National Space Club scholarships.

Keynoting the dinner will be “Dr. Elizabeth Barrios”, a structural materials engineer at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center who focuses on the failure analysis of avionics and electrical, electronic and electromechanical parts. She also conducts research on the development of new energy conversion materials and processing schemes to address the needs of future manned missions to the moon and Mars surfaces.