What to expect during Space Week at McGill

What is our future in space? During the first week of May, McGill University examines that very question.

Space Week is a week-long event taking place on-campus, acting as an important component of the ongoing Bicentennial Signature event programming. Taking place the week of May 2 on McGill’s downtown campus, Space Week will seek to create a shared vision of McGill and Canada’s future in space and how we will continue to evolve to suit the needs of a rapidly developing field. Each event will highlight the contributions of the McGill community – from students to alumni to faculty.

International space and aerospace conference

Over the coming decades, as the aerospace sector shifts its focus towards enabling space travel, an integrated space and aerospace ecosystem is expected to emerge. The Space Research Conference at McGill University will welcome space and aerospace communities for cross-industry exchange. On May 3 and 4, sessions and panels will examine space issues from multiple perspectives – including engineering, healthcare, law, and space science.

Programming for this conference include sessions such as “Planetary Protection,” “Healthcare in Deep Space: Autonomous Medicine, Practical AI, Advanced Simulation,” “Telescopes of the Future,” and panels such as “The ethical, cultural and societal implications of humanity’s interest in space.” Register for this conference to ensure your spot, and hear from the world’s top academic researchers, business pioneers, and government leaders.

Next generation of space and aerospace leaders

Meet Canada’s next generation of space and aerospace leaders! The McGill Student Aero/Space Fair will be held at the Leacock Building main corridor throughout the week. Six McGill student groups involved in the fields of space and aerospace – AstroMcGill, McGill Robotics, McGill Institute for Aerospace Engineering, McGill Space Group, McGill Rocket Team, and MARTLET – will present their work and research through demonstrations, simulations, and various activities. This event will look at the history of space and aerospace at McGill and in Canada and showcase current efforts that lead the way to a strong future in space exploration.

Welcome McGill’s astronauts

Since 1983, 14 Canadians have been named astronauts, including five McGill graduates: Dave Williams (BSc’76, MDCM’83, MSc’83, DSc’07), Robert Thirsk (MDCM’82), Julie Payette (BEng’86, DSc’03), David Saint-Jacques (MedResident ’07), and Jennifer Sidey (BEng’11).

The MADE in Space: McGill astronauts share their experiences panel will take place on Tuesday, May 3, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. In this special event, learn about the contributions that some of our McGill and Canadian astronauts made to the fields of space and aerospace and to the explorations of the universe. Hear the panelists share their adventures in space, and their experiences at McGill.”

The Phi Centre brings virtual reality to McGill

The Phi Centre is coming to McGill University, providing Space Week attendees with the opportunity to experience virtual reality at the Space Week VR Garden. The Phi Centre is a Montreal-based arts and cultural organization that aims to create powerful experiences with lasting impact.” At the VR Garden guests will use Oculus VR headsets to experience innovative virtual reality works.

The VR Garden will be open on Thursday, May 5 and Friday, May 6 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Reserve your forty-five minute spot to experience this free event.

Guests will have the opportunity to view an episode from the Emmy® award-winning Space Explorers franchise, The Journey Begins and The ISS Experience, which examine the new era of space exploration. In The Journey Begins: A New Dawn, witness the lives of NASA astronauts as they navigate the trials and sacrifices of their training and missions, and in The Journey Begins: Taking Flight, explore the camaraderie of space programs around the world and discover the latest advancements and plans for deep space exploration. In The ISS Experience: Adapt, a new crew of astronauts arrive aboard the International Space Station and discover the joy, wonder, and dangers of life in space, and in The ISS Experience: Advance, astronauts perform critical experiments that push the boundaries of life in space as three crew members prepare to return to earth.

Joint anniversary celebration with CRIAQ

McGill University is celebrating its 200th anniversary while the Consortium for Research and Innovation in Aerospace in Québec (CRIAQ) is celebrating its 20th anniversary. This joint event will be comprised of three components: a presentation about CRIAQ’s vision for the future and past collaborative projects with McGill; a panel discussion on the upcoming 100 years of aerospace, between key academic players, industrial leaders, and students; and a networking event.

Get involved with Space Week

If you’re interested in space and aerospace, or want to get involved on campus, volunteer for Space Week! Volunteers will be provided with lunch on the days they select, a t-shirt, a water bottle, and can attend either the MADE in Space astronaut panel or the Phi Centre VR Garden. Anybody within the McGill community is welcome to sign up.