XII Congress of the Association of Space Explorers
Ottawa, Montreal and Quebec, Canada
September 28-October 4, 1996

On Tuesday morning, congress participants traveled two hours by bus directly to the Canadian Space Agency near Montreal for the congress Theme Session. Romanian-born Canadian Nicolas Mateesco Matte, a pioneer scholar in the field of space law, delivered the keynote address. Prior to accepting the Crystal Helmet Planetary Award, he reminded the assembled fliers and dignitaries of the importance and efficacy of codifying international standards of conduct and cooperation in outer space, and he expressed his admiration for those [fliers] who are “living proof that the impossible could become possible.” He also noted his belief that in an ever-changing world, the legal profession still has an important role in the development of national and global space activities, and he spoke of the need for an inter-disciplinary and multi-cultural approach to the teaching and practice of space exploration. Following the theme session, the fliers and companions took advantage of some free time to wander around historic downtown Montreal before departing for a dinner sponsored by CASI at the Bonaventure Hotel.

Wednesday was another full day for the delegates--returning to CSA in St. Hubert, the fifth working session of the congress was held featuring a presentation by Gordon Fullerton on the flight characteristics of thrust vector propulsion systems, a report by Mario Runco on his recent flight on STS-77, an update on Canadian activities in space by Chris Hadfield, Steve MacLean and Bob Thirsk, and a video was shown by Alexei Leonov on his Voskhod 2 spaceflight and EVA. Following a buffet lunch with the Canadian astronauts and the employees of CSA, the fliers attended the official christening of the Canadian Space Agency as the John H. Chapman Space Center.

Concluding the ceremony and visit to Montreal, the assembled astronauts and cosmonauts signed commemorative congress posters and assembled in the futuristic lobby of the CSA for a group photo. Directly from the space center, the delegations traveled 3 hours by bus to a reception on board Canada's newest frigate, the HMCS Ottawa in Quebec City harbor, where they were treated to a buffet dinner and a warm welcome by the officers and crew.

Thursday, the last full day of the congress, was devoted almost exclusively to working sessions. Held at Canadian Forces Base Valcartier in Quebec City, the fliers listened to presentations made by Konstantin Feoktistiov, who delivered a highly detailed and technical presentation on the aerospike engine design; Frank Culbertson discussed Phase I and Phase II Shuttle/Mir operations and plans; Koichi Wakata talked about the cultural and language barriers to international crew training and operations, and Charlie Precourt discoursed on the implications international cooperation will have on space flight (crew) safety and made some specific recommendations for establishing an international body, staffed by current and former astronauts, with safety oversight responsibilities.

Following the working sessions, the Executive Session of the congress was held; during this session Fred Gregory and Alexei Leonov were elected to the Co- Presidency of the international association, and Miroslaw Hermaszewski, Ulf Merbold, and Charlie Walker were elected to the international Executive Committee.

XII Congress General Statement




The Association


ASE Members


Planetary Congress



Boards & Committees




Corporate Members