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  • Satellite Evolution Group

Lunar and cislunar missions, small satellite trends and the Spanish Space Agency will be the focus of the next SSSIF

The city of Malaga will once again host the International Small Satellites & Services Forum (SSSIF), which will take place on February 20th, 21st, and 22nd. This meeting, which celebrates its 5th edition this year, has become a reference event for the small satellite sector both nationally and internationally.


This year the congress is being held under the slogan "Lunar and Cislunar Missions: Exploration and Business", an edition that pays special attention to the market and exploration missions that revolve around the lunar surface and the environment of the moon. For three days, experts from different fields linked to the space sector will discuss the current situation and future trends in the field of small satellites.


The opening day will feature a presentation by Andrés Martínez, Executive Director of Space Programs at NASA's Advanced Exploration Systems Division, who will give his views on the main challenges facing the small satellite sector in the coming years.


Approximately one year ago, Spain inaugurated the Spanish Space Agency (AEE) with the aim of making the country a competitive power in this sector. This will be the subject of the first panel of the day, in which Álvaro Giménez, delegate of the ESA and research professor at the CSIC, will be responsible for stimulating a debate on the activity carried out by the new Space Agency during its first year of life, and its future objectives.


This panel will be followed by a second panel titled "Small satellites and their applications in defense", which will focus on the new technologies that are being developed for the defense of countries through small satellites. This second workshop will be attended by leading figures from the Spanish Air Force and private companies such as INDRA and Telespazzio, who will give their views on the polarization of today's world and the defense challenges that Spain and Europe must face in the coming years.


The last panel of day one will focus on space exploration using small satellites. Small satellites currently provide a key opportunity to develop scientific missions in a more affordable way. Experts from all over the world such as Mariella Graciano from GMV and Miguel Pereira from ARGOTEC will exchange experiences and ideas as a source of support for new actions and missions.


Investment funds, start-ups and the applications of small satellites in communication, navigation and in the ground segment, the key issues of the second day of SSSIF.


Efrén Díaz, a lawyer specialized in the space sector, will be in charge of leading the panel on "Investment funds and new start-ups", which aims to offer a fresh and dynamic vision of the current state of financing for companies and their missions into space.


This workshop will be followed by "Communication and navigation applications of small satellites", chaired by Javier Ventura - Traveset from the European Space Agency, a large panel of experts, who will give an update and review of the latest developments and strategies on the contributions of small satellites in the communications and navigation sectors.


The second day will end with the panel "Ground segment and small satellite applications", chaired by Carlos Fernández from Telespazio. Many new satellites and constellations require a much larger infrastructure in terms of ground stations and technology, so the main experts in this field including Nicolas Martín (AEE), Patricia Argerey (Director of Innovation of the Xunta de Galicia) and Igor Alonso (KSAT), among others, will present the current situation and plans within this sector.


Cislunar economy, space debris and technologies developed for small satellites. The main topics that will close the congress.


The third day of SSSIF will focus on the "Cislunar Economy" through a panel on the exploration of the moon and asteroids which is a new opportunity for startups, technology, and long-term goals. 


Another current issue and vitally important topic is "Space Debris Mitigation and In-Orbit Servicing", which will be the focus of the day’s second panel. As a side effect of advances in space missions, obsolete and uncontrolled satellites are becoming a major problem for constellations. Space agencies and governments alike are very concerned about this new "space junk". Therefore, new strategies, regulations, and actions are being sought to combat this new form of pollution.


"Technologies developed for small satellites" is the closing panel of the SSSIF. Small satellites, as opposed to large spacecraft, have been a key topic of debate between companies and Space Agencies. This panel will review new trends and technologies from leading experts in the sector.

The activities of the 2024 SSSIF forum will be complemented by a second conference room where projects and technological developments of special relevance, linked to the space sector, will be presented in fields as diverse as launchers, market trends, satellite constellations, space debris, telecommunications, and components for small satellites. Among the companies and entities present will be AIRBUS, the EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY (ESA), SENER, Starburst, and various national and international universities.

In addition, the exhibitors' area will present a varied technological offer, as well as areas for event visitors to network and host meetings.

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