Sustainable Space Logistics Essay Competition 2019

The EPFL Space Center (eSpace), supported by the Space Safety and Sustainability (SSS) Project Group of the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC), is honoured to invite participants of all ages, from all around the world to take part in this essay competition. Our competition will provide entrants with the opportunity to introduce new ideas on the topic of how to develop space logistics services, in a safe and sustainable way.
In recent years, the space industry has undergone profound changes. The drop in launch costs has been driven by numerous start-ups following the path of SpaceX in the launch industry. These new actors, in particular, SpaceX and Blue Origin, work tirelessly to effect a transformation in the space industry similar to that which occurred previously in the aviation industry. Moving from single-use to reusable rockets which only requires inspection between launches was a risky decision, but it has been vindicated by the significant reduction in the cost of access to space. Many new launchers intend to, and will, make space more accessible than ever before.
At the same time, small and nanosatellite formats and the standardization and industrialization of the production of satellites enable new innovative business models and missions. The space industry has evolved towards the predominantly commercial operation. But such new activities also introduce new challenges in terms of sustainability, such as the increase of the number of satellites and debris that will increase the probability of collision which could lead to a chain reaction, the current use of non-green propellant, or the limited in-situ resources for space exploration (Moon/Mars).

Objective

Write an essay about the topic: “Which space logistics needs will be necessary for sustainable space activities horizon 2030?”

  • What will be the main space activities horizon 2030?
  • Which stakeholders will need space logistics support?
  • What will be their main space logistics needs (packaging, storage, inventory, warehousing, transport, information & control, etc.)?
  • What are your justifications (references, etc.)?

Eligibility

The competition is open to all.

Awards

  • The 10 first winners will be contacted via email and announced on this website page in January 2020. They will receive an electronic certificate.
  • 1st prize:
    • Amazon gift card of 200€.
    • 1-year subscription to the NewSpace magazine (value of $129).
    • Electronic certificate – 1st prize.
  • 2nd prize:
    • 1-year subscription to the NewSpace magazine (value of $129).
    • Electronic certificate – 2nd prize.

Submission

  1. The essay shall be submitted by 30 November 2019, 23:59 GMT. Any submissions after the deadline will not be considered.
  2. The essay shall be submitted in PDF format at espace@epfl.ch
  3. The essay must be written in English.
  4. References (books, articles, magazines, websites, etc.) must be properly cited. We recommend using APA style citation
  5. The essay must contain between 1000-2000 words excluding the title and the references. It may also contain graphic illustrations or tables that do not count into the word count.
  6. The participant has to be the sole author and has to hold all rights to the essay. Essays must not be previously submitted to other competitions nor published. All essays will be checked for plagiarism. Plagiarism of more than 10% will be disqualified.
  7. Participants may only submit only one essay on the topic.
  8. Participants must NOT include their name or any kind of identification in their essay to allow anonymity for the purpose of a fair judging process. The judges will only receive the essays without your email contact. All essays will be equally treated regardless of the participant’s age, gender, race, nationality, religion, and title.

Evaluation

All admitted essays will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Content
  • Strong support and development of the ideas
  • Quality of the references
  • Clear expression of thoughts and style

Copyrights

  • By submitting an entry, applicants allow the EPFL Space Center and SGAC to mention their names in connection with the competition.
  • Copyright of the submitted entry shall remain with the contestants. However, by submitting an entry, all contestants agree that the EPFL Space Center and SGAC are granted non-exclusive reproduction rights regarding all submitted papers. SGAC and all affiliated organizers may also present ideas and findings generated by this competition at relevant conferences.

Contact

For any questions, please contact espace@epfl.ch

The Competition Organizing Team

  • Professor Jean-Paul Kneib, EPFL
  • Dr Sonia Ben Hamida, EPFL
  • Jessica Creech, SGAC SSS PG
  • Laura-Adriana Florean, SGAC SSS PG
  • George-Cristian Potrivitu, SGAC SSS PG