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Resources: The Foundry 2001

Do you want to help put the human race into space? Are you tired of watching from the sidelines but aren't sure how to get involved? Have project concepts you would like to pursue? Come to the Foundry at the 2001 ISDC in Albuquerque New Mexico starting on the 25th of May.

The Foundry is a project incubator workshop. The Foundry helps participants turn good ideas into doable projects. The Foundry brings together those who are willing to work for a project of their choice and (or those who want to help), the necessary expertise, and the resources all in one place. The Foundry is open to anyone who wants to participate.

Funding is available for NSS chapter projects. The Foundry is not just for chapters, but this funding may serve as one good reason to start some new chapters. The Foundry will be the process for establishing which chapter projects get funded, and by how much. The Foundry process will also enable participates to identify other potential funding sources and prepare them to apply for these. The Foundry leadership has experience in project fund raising such as contributor programs and NASA grants for non-profit organizations, and venture capital along with NASA and commercial contracts for profit seeking space development ventures.

Do you want to put on a space day for kids, or build an experiment to fly in space? Are you interested in performing space-related studies or laying the groundwork for even bigger endeavors? Interested in starting a space-related business? These are only examples of ideas that people are bringing to the Foundry to further develop, plan, line up resources for, and execute. The Foundry organizers understand, as many in the space community do, that there are some things that the government can't or won't do. It is therefore the goal of the Foundry to further space-based private initiatives, whether they are for profit or non-profit.

Suppose you want to come to the Foundry but you don't have any project ideas in mind? If you do not have a scheme in mind (not everybody does) but want to help, you are needed and welcome. Those with projects in mind will need your help, your contribution. In a project of any size, a number of individual's efforts are required at some point to complete the endeavor. Initially we will go over all the proposed project ideas. You can then see which projects you want to work on.

HAL5 will offer the 2001 ISDC Foundry a set of "ready-to-bake-precanned" projects for NSS chapters. One is the opportunity to participate in HAL5's High Altitude Lift-Off (HALO) Program. The HALO Program consist of two development projects, hybrid rocket systems, and balloon launched rocket (rockoon) systems. HAL5 plans to fly student payloads, after the first demonstration flight, into space on suborbital trajectories. The other project, HALO Achievement is being developed under the guidelines of Junior Achievement to take space education into the classroom. Fifth graders will learn the characteristics of space and form project teams to develop concepts for sending Rascal the Rockoon Raccoon to Mars. Seventh graders will participate in Junior Cadet Foundries to develop projects for flying experiments on ground launched amateur rockets and high-altitude weather balloons. The Junior Cadet Foundries will last six-nine weeks in the classroom, and up to all year as an extracurricular activity. Twelfth graders will participate in Senior Cadet Foundries to propose projects to fly on HALO rockoon missions.

Another source of project concepts may be found at the following web site: http://www.nsschapters.org/hub/projects.htm

We must help ourselves get into space. Our goals are ambitious and will not happen overnight. Our goals will be accomplished incrementally, with contributions from many different disciplines, over several years. The Foundry is structured to accommodate this bite-size-at-a-time approach to space.

How does the Foundry work? Most projects have common up front planning activities. They include thinking through and answering common questions such as what major tasks are involved, manpower and other resources required, potential pitfalls to avoid, etc. How these questions are answered is dependent on project size and type, complexity and duration. Putting on a space fair at a school involves different resources and problems from, say, building an experiment for space. The Foundry, however, can accommodate the up front planning of both activities as well as many others, and has available resources useful to each of them.

How can you become involved? We are currently signing up participants (those who have projects in mind or want to help with one) and consultants (those who can provide the benefit of their experience and expertise at the conference).

  • Foundry Participant has a project in mind or wants to help with one, and agrees to attend the Foundry during the 1998 ISDC. Foundry Participants will be sent a packet with more detailed information on how to prepare for the Foundry.
  • Foundry Consultant agrees to volunteer his or her experience/expertise during the 2001 ISDC as needed. Expertise in the fields of marketing, finance, technical and scientific disciplines, and others, are needed. The idea is to utilize the expertise already available at the conference.

ISDC conference attendees are a select group. They are doers, dreamers, and thinkers. They can and do actively work towards the goals of living and working and exploring space. The Foundry can help.

If you are interested in this activity; either as a Foundry Participant, or as a Foundry Consultant, please download the full Foundry documentation in one of the following available formats:

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