Less than one year after its creation, PolyOrbite was already represented at the annual International Astronautical Congress (IAC) held in Beijing, China, with our associates from the Bologna University of Italia. It occurred in the last week of September, from the 23rd to the 27th. As described by the IAC’s official website, “The IAC is the one place and time of the year when all space actors come together”. Professional from all over the world meet at this very event to share the latest information on space and spatial technologies and make contacts over an elaborated range of symposiums, conferences, plenaries and mere discussions.
This year, our Project Lead, Étienne Bourbeau, and our Mechanical Team Lead, Mark Smyth, presented an article about our satellite’s main missions, which consist of reducing orbital detritus over time and study the geomorphology of the Baffin’s island, North Canada. They also gave an overall description of every subsystem to be used in the satellite and described the functioning of our collaboration with the University of Bologna and our educational outreach for different age groups.
Apart from the presentation itself, contacts were made with different professionals and universities throughout the globe. For instance, our members had the opportunity to talk to the Lithuanian Space Agency’s Director, make a collaboration with an aerospace professor from the University of Bologna, Italia, regarding the antennas, and acquire precious information from Polish, Scottish, German, Romanian and Italian university representatives, only to name some of them.
On a lighter note, the communication was more difficult than expected. Our members constantly had to draw pictograms in order to be understood, which considerably complicated their traveling: ‘’We are lucky they understand Arabic numbers!’’ said Étienne Bourbeau, Project Lead, ‘’Otherwise, it would have been impossible for us to find our way through this city’’.
In short, we are all very proud of this achievement, which, in itself, truly is an innovation from an École Polytechnique de Montréal’s technical society. This experience greatly benefits all of us with international collaborations. We are looking forward to the next edition of the International Astronautical Congress.