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by Launchspace Staff Writers
Bethesda MD (SPX) Aug 06, 2014
The newly formed Center for Orbital Debris Education and Research (CODER) at the University of Maryland is off to a rapid start. Collaborations with-in the industry are quickly being formed in order to create focused research projects that will hopefully lead to a better understanding of the many complex issues regarding orbital debris and its effects on the future of spaceflight as we know it.
There is little doubt that the unchecked growth and propagation of the debris will, sooner or later, lead to a loss of access to most of the popular near-Earth orbital destinations.
In fact, this situation might possibly lead to a complete loss of space access. Although near-term impacts on spaceflight will likely remain manageable, continued inaction on the part of space-faring nations assures long-term degradation of our ability to take advantage of space applications that are so important to modern commerce, economic health and national security.
A reactive approach to this evolving threat will eventually lead to a large time-gap in many of the space-based services that we enjoy today. A proactive approach to problem resolution can lead to uninterrupted services and increased advantages that are available only through the use of space applications.
The University of Maryland has anticipated the impact of inaction and has initiated an academic-based center of proactive action to properly address orbital debris issues. Furthermore, the university is taking a "real-world" approach by enlisting the help of many other universities, industry, government and all space-faring nations.
CODER encompasses not only the technology challenges of debris mitigation and remediation, but has taken on the ambitious inclusion of all disciplines that address the issues, including national policy, space law and economic modelling.
As part of CODER's goal of including all interested organizations in its activities, the center is recruiting Industrial Affiliates to share in challenges and rewards of pursuing solutions to one of the world's growing threats to the global economy and security.
Industry partners will share in the governance and guidance of the center, but will also realize a unique set of benefits. Each affiliate will participate on the basis of an annual membership cycle and be asked to contribute a one-time Initiation Fee plus an Annual Membership Fee.
For example, CODER Industrial Affiliates (CIAs) will be treated as preferred partners for teaming on major government funded research and technology demonstration efforts.
Members will have access to non-public research materials, proprietary CODER-developed software, and certain royalty-free rights and licenses to intellectual property developed at CODER. Each affiliate will participate in guiding the direction of CODER research projects and be able to monitor ongoing research activities.
Members will have early access to research project results and be able to take advantage of educational activities, such as registration-free admission to technical meetings, conferences and workshops. Additional educational opportunities include priority enrollment in CODER-sponsored short courses and seminars.
CODER is starting its proactive outreach program with the 2014 Orbital Debris Workshop. This event will be held at the University of Maryland, November 18-20, 2014. The workshop will include presentations from experts on the technology, policy, legal and business aspects of dealing with orbital debris issues.
CODER Industrial Affiliates Program
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