Conference to Mark 25th Anniversary of First Arab Astronaut’s Flight

Sultan Salman Abdulaziz Al-Saud

KACST celebrating silver jubilee of Prince Sultan’s space trip

An elaborate program to mark the silver jubilee celebrations of the Kingdom’s participation in the international space program led by Prince Sultan bin Salman has been drawn up by the King Abdulaziz City for Science & Technology (KACST) together with NASA. The two-day celebrations are to start on Saturday.

“The celebrations will include a major space and aeronautics technology conference in which Saudi and NASA experts will make presentations and share their views,” said Dr. Mohammed Al-Suwaiyel, KACST president.

Al-Suwaiyel said the conference — entitled “the Saudi International Space and Aeronautics Technology Conference” — has attracted several NASA leaders, astronauts, a Nobel Prize winner and a unique group of renowned space scientists.

“Participating in the opening session of the conference will be Prince Sultan, Gen. Charles F. Bolden, a NASA administrator and a veteran astronaut of four space shuttle flights,” said the KACST chief.

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Editor’s Note: According to the conference website, other confirmed speakers from the U.S. side include:

  • Space shuttle veterans Steven R. Nagel and Shannon Lucid, who flew with Al-Saud on STS-51G;
  • Dr. Charles Elachi, director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory;
  • NASA Ames Research Center Director Pete Worden;
  • Gregory Schmidt, deputy director  of the NASA Lunar Science Institute at NASA Ames;
  • Former NASA JSC Director George Abbey;
  • Apollo astronaut Russell L. Schweickart;
  • Nobel Laureate John L. Hall, senior research associate at JILA/NIST in Colorado.
  • Dr. Charbel Farhat, chairman of Stanford University’s Aeronautics and Astronautics Department;
  • Dr. Peter Michelson, director of the W.W. Hansen Experimental Physics Laboratory at Stanford University;
  • Dr. Robert Byer, co-director of Stanford University’s Photonics Research Center;
  • Dr. Charles William Everitt, a Stanford University professor who is an expert in satellite design; and,
  • Dr. David C. Hyland, director of Space Science and Space Engineering Research at Texas A&M University.