Flanked by a NASA astronaut, Mayor Kevin Faulconer announced Tuesday that a hub for applying research from the International Space Station to commercial innovation on earth will open in San Diego.
Faulconer said the new hub for the NASA-affiliated Center for the Advancement of Science in Space adds space science and technology to San Diego’s innovation ecosystem.
“This is a huge coup for all of us,” he said, “as we add space to our innovation ecosystem.”
The hub is being managed by Jana Stoudemire, who is temporarily working out of the CONNECT offices in La Jolla. Plans are to set up a small office and recruit a team to reach out to San Diego companies. The San Diego office is only the third hub after offices in Texas and Florida.
“Access to the International Space Station is a significant opportunity for both research and startups,” said Greg McKee, chief executive officer of CONNECT, San Diego’s oldest technology incubator.
Stoudemire predicted there would be abundant research in life sciences and remote sensing of interest to San Diego companies.
Better known by its acronym CASIS, the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space manages the national laboratory aboard the football-field size station orbiting 250 miles up. Six astronauts are currently living aboard the station and performing research.
The mayor spoke as hundreds of people involved in the space industry gathered in San Diego this week for the annual International Space Station Research & Development Conference.
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