Category Archives: SSI Alumni

An Interesting SSI Weekend

Just a quick update for the SSI family… over the long holiday weekend The Space Studies Institute sure got some things done.

After wrapping up some must-do general office busywork last week we pulled out the Space Based Solar Power/Solar Power Satellite collection cases and got back into organizing for eventual public release.

In the 1990’s The Space Studies Institute was selected to be the repository of  the  NASA and Department of Energy SPS documentation and over the years many researchers had visited the Princeton SSI offices to pour over these priceless volumes.  When SSI moved main operations to the Mojave Air and Space Port this large, heavy collection was put into storage for a time when the budget would allow safest shipping and that time arrived last summer when an SSI Senior Associate contributed their time to do the packing and paid for the transport to the West coast.

Some of the SSI NASA DOE SPS report collection being put in order
Some of the SSI NASA DOE SPS report collection being put in order

On Friday we put much of the collection in chronological order and got a chunk of the Velobound reports digitized.  Hundreds more, those in spiral and staple binding and in cloth-glued format are still to come and thanks to an SSI SA’s loan of  a wide format book scanner they will be done as we are able.

The scanning is just the “easy” part, after that each page will be individually enhanced and each report will be put into separate PDFs with hyperlinked tables of contents and hierarchical bookmarking to make life easier for future SPS researchers.


This is very time consuming work but we look forward to a first release within a few months, if all goes well, and SSI Senior Associates up to date on memberships for 2018 can look forward to something special in their mailboxes at that time (Which reminds me, if you haven’t gotten around to renewing your pledge for the year please head over to the Join Page and click the Senior Associate yellow button to use paypal for that.)

That was Friday, on Saturday an SSI Alumnus and I met up  for a nice lunch just to talk Space and Options and there just happened to be a very large piece of paper with us that has been in need of digital cleaning.  Upon seeing the white page with blue sketching he offered to see what he could do to bring a bit of Space History back to the light of day  – and he also renewed his SSI Senior Associate pledge, which is is very appreciated and just makes us all more comfortable when we allow “insider” information out of the SSI physical archives.

We very much look forward to seeing what he comes up with and hope that in time we will have something very nice to show in an upcoming SSI Associate members-only newsletter.


And then there was a little thing that happened yesterday on the SSI Announcements Facebook page, the place where we put fast notes of interest to the SSI Family…  February 19th, being the birthday of Nicolaus Copernicus, we thought deserved a notice.  And it was definitely noticed:

SSI remembers the birthday of Nicolaus Copernicus
SSI remembers the birthday of Nicolaus Copernicus

Over 20 thousand good people saw that little post, it was shared 200  times, Liked by over 850 people, Loved by 65 and even given “Ha-Ha” by 11 :-).

If you didn’t see it, here is a direct link:

There were a lot of comments, some quite interesting from folks who don’t normally have Space technologies in their day to day work, and while some of us might not share all of the opinions that everyone chose to expose publicly, it all makes for very good research.

The Space Studies Institute is about using the Energy and Material Resources of Space to help regular people everywhere they chose to live –  ALL regular people, not just those those who see things exactly as we do right now.  So if you check  that post’s set of threads and maybe are considering joining in, we know that you will take a breath and remember that everyone is entitled to an opinion and arguments don’t help anyone – what helps Everyone is working to show by deed where real positives can be made.

There’s an old truism that someone paraphrased at the Estes Park Advanced Propulsion Workshop: “People will argue forever that something is impossible… but when a cannonball is sitting in mid-air right before your own eyes, it is hard to deny it.’  The contributions and tax deductible donations of our Associates work to make people see that “Impossible” things with potential benefit sometimes just need extra help.  We sincerely appreciate all of your help and we look forward to updating you on the ongoing projects mentioned above and the others that truly deserve your full support.

SSI Senior Associate and Volunteer Robert Smith
The Space Studies Institute


Thank you SSI Associates!

THANK YOU to our recent new and renewing SSI Associates:

E. Tilenius, California
S. MacEwan, Virginia
S. & B. Brodbeck, Ohio
C. Renaud
L. Danly, California
B. Greene, New York
D. Taylor, Colorado
K. Gallant, New York
P. Friedman, New York

Your generous support makes a real difference and we all sincerely appreciate your show of personal dedication.

To join as an Space Studies Institute Senior Associate or renew your pledge and support the real work towards The Human Breakout Into Space, visit this page at

SSI Classic

Let the Sun Shine In

Swarthmore College Bulletin August 1992 cover

It is commonly accepted that excellent places of higher learning are those that are not only open to the investigation of extreme ideas, but are those which encourage that investigation.

The cover of the August 1992 Swarthmore College Bulletin shows that openness by the students… and, far more importantly, if you look closely at the last paragraphs of the editor’s introduction to the issue’s first article, you’ll see that when students instinctively shy away from a topic that challenges them a bit too much an excellent instructor is one who guides them to think twice.

Swarthmore College Bulletin August 1992 GKON article

If you want to read that article, just scroll to the bottom of the May 1992 SSI Update Newsletter.


Two great Summer Gatherings

Two summer gathering alerts from SSI Senior Associates John Jossy and Tom Valone!

From SSI SA Thomas Valone, PhD, PE, President of the Integrity Research Institute:

‘It was a joy to have Gerard sign my copy of The High Frontier in the 1970s and gratifying to see his institute still in business.

This summer the Ninth International Conference on Future Energy (COFE9) will be held in Albuquerque NM on July 28-29, 2017 in parallel with the ExtraOrdinary Technology Conference in the same Embassy Suites Hotel. We also feature Breakthrough Propulsion speakers and are currently funding TWO breakthrough propulsion projects by previous presenters.

For more information please visit ‘


And from SSI SA John Jossy:

‘This August Icarus Interstellar is holding their Starship Congress in Monterey, California. The event, held every other year, is dedicating this meeting to focusing on lunar space infrastructure development. Icarus Interstellar’s mission is to support the basic research needed for humankind to reach the stars. But first things first. The focus of this year’s conference poses the question: “How can we hope to gain experience living, building and working off planet without systematically capitalizing on our nearest, most accessible celestial body?”

Day one will examine the moon as a stepping-stone to the planets, and ultimately the stars. The presentations will explore all aspects of lunar colonies. For example lunar city planning, lunar resources, construction, power, water, radiation shielding, living and working, economy, sociology. In addition, planetary, deep space and interstellar exploration with the Moon as a centerpiece will be examined through discussions of spacecraft shipyards, lunar space elevators and deep space remote sensing telescopes.

The second day will look first at massive space access systems. This will include cis-Lunar transport vehicles, global logistics, tourism, legal and safety considerations and military presence. The topic of “Children in Space” will then be explored covering youth space education programs, people with disabilities in space and answer the question “When will we send the first child to space?” The philosophy behind solving this problem is that when it is safe for children to go there, it will be much more desirable for all people to travel to the moon!

The third day will address large-scale space based infrastructure and cultural needs. The former topic will address technology needed to support space and lunar industry such as space stations, mining facilities, telecommunications, zero gravity and lunar gravity manufacturing technology development. The cultural aspects include space arts, sports, community and culture; that is, everything not considered infrastructure, but which is necessary for humans to live and prosper on the Moon and in space.

A presentation on this third day will be made by Kim Holder, creator of Moonwards, a website depicting a virtual colony on the Moon. Moonwards attempts through engineering rigor and 3D simulation, to visualize a large-scale settlement by a group of nations collaborating to colonize the Moon, basing their design decisions on technical and economic merit. Immediately after the presentation, a panel discussion is planned moderated by Dr. David Livingston, host of the Space Show. The panel will feature Dr. Haym Benaroya, professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Rutgers University, Kim Holder, and myself. You can visit Moonwards at .

Starship Congress 2017 is happening August 7-9 at the Hyatt Regency in Monterey, California. You can find more information with links on how to register here: ‘


Thanks Tom and John for sharing this great information!