News archive

43rd COSPAR Scientific Assembly Postponed to 28 January - 4 February 2021

The leadership of COSPAR and the Local Organizing Committee for COSPAR 2020 in Sydney, Australia have concluded that with the worldwide pandemic and accompanying social and economic disruption, COSPAR 2020 must be postponed.  Full text of postponement announcement available here. The new dates for the 43rd COSPAR Scientific Assembly will be 28 January – 4 February 2021 and hereafter will be referred to as COSPAR 2021. The extensive planning and preparations for COSPAR 2020 are completely transferable to the new dates, by which time we anticipate that the thirst for knowledge and personal collaboration throughout the global space research community can and will be met with an extremely successful COSPAR Scientific Assembly in Australia. We sincerely hope that the entire COSPAR community is able to remain healthy and that the extraordinary efforts underway to contain the coronavirus and preserve economic security are successful. In the meantime, let’s continue to work together virtually so that we ensure a Sydney summer in January 2021 will both brighten our outlook and continue our cause of promoting and facilitating international cooperation and advances in space research.

ESA Announcement of Opportunity for NASA Mars 2020 Returned Sample Science Participants Scientist

In the frame of Mars Sample Return (MSR) this Returned Sample Science Participating Scientist (RSS PS) Announcement of Opportunity (AO) of ESA seeks individuals whose addition to the NASA Mars 2020 mission science team will enhance the value of the samples to be selected, characterized, and cached by the NASA Mars 2020 Rover. RSS PSs selected through this AO will join the NASA Mars 2020 Science Team. ESA encourages proposals from people in ESA member states who have not previously participated in Mars missions or Mars research, but have expertise in the analysis of rock or soil samples, or who have relevant experience in collecting such samples in the field prior to laboratory analysis. Proposals are limited to only one individual, the Principal Investigator. Team proposals are not permitted. The timing of this AO is designed to permit selection and training of RSS PSs in time to contribute fully to both pre-landing activities and to science operations immediately upon arrival at Mars. A Letter of Intent (LOI) is mandatory for this AO (LOI deadline is 15 April 2020). More information (background information, deadlines, templates for LOI and proposal) can be found on the AO: For question contact: esa‐

Opportunity for Capacity Building in Small Satellites Development and Operations for Universities in Developing Countries

The COSPAR Panel for Capacity Building (PCB) is trying to establish a long-term capacity building project together with the International Satellite Program in Research and Education (INSPIRE), based on the development and scientific exploitation of small satellites. This project aims to enable space hardware and instrumentation development and to provide guidance on best practices for hardware development, sustainable space activities, and crafting space policy among emerging space nations.  See here for more details.

The International Space Science Institute (ISSI) invites applications for Director

Please see here for further details.  Deadline for applications:  April 15, 2020.

43rd COSPAR Scientific Assembly: Abstract Submission Deadline 23 Feb.

The 43rd COSPAR Scientific Assembly will be held in Sydney, Australia, 15-22 August 2020.  Information on the scientific program and other relevant links, including to abstract submission, are at The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) website, for information on registration, accommodation and other matters, is open at


New Zealand Adheres to COSPAR

On 8 February New Zealand became a member of COSPAR with the Royal Society Te Apārangi as the national scientific institute. The COSPAR community extends a warm welcome.

ASR 2019 Top 10 Reviewers

Pascale Defraigne (Belgium),  Jianghui Geng (China),  John Bosco Habarulema (South Africa), Koji Mukai (USA), Yuichi Otsuka (Japan), Elijah Oyeyemi (Nigeria), Jacek Paziewski (Poland), Michael Pezzopane (Italy), Ilya Usoskin (Finland), Ningbo Wang (China). Full article to follow in the April issue of Space Research Today (SRT).

The International Astronautical Federation

Call for Proposals 2020 for the Johannes Geiss Fellowship

The International Space Science Institute (ISSI) in Bern, Switzerland invites applications for the Johannes Geiss Fellowship (JGF) 2020. The JGF provides a generous stipend covering travel cost and living expenses for a stay at ISSI, Bern, of up to 6 months. The JGF can be either taken in one piece, e.g. as a sabbatical, or in several separate intervals. Further information at Deadline for submission to ISSI is March 13, 2020.

ISSI Beijing Call for proposals for establishing International Teams

The  International  Space  Science  Institute  (ISSI)  in  Bern, Switzerland, and ISSI-BJ in Beijing, China, invite  proposals  for  establishing  International Teams to conduct on its premises research activities in Space Sciences, based on the interdisciplinary  analysis  and  evaluation  of  data  from  spacecraft  and possible integration with ground data and theoretical models. Letter of Intent: February 13, 2020. Deadline for proposals: March 25, 2020. The Call for International Teams proposal is available on the ISSI web site: