The bright side of space
The 8th edition of the Belarusian Space Congress, which was held in Minsk from October 25th to October 27th, became a place of attraction for scientists and experts working on the subject of space, a venue for discussing new achievements, the results of scientific and technical programmes of the Union State, as well as partnerships between enterprises and organisations in the space industry.A native of Belarus, cosmonaut Oleg Novitsky is among the guests of the 8th edition of the Belarusian Space Congress
State Secretary of the Union State of Belarus and Russia Dmitry Mezentsev called the accelerating co-operation in the field of space, in general, a new level of integration between Belarus and Russia, the best response to the unprecedented pressure from the West, “The best response to the unprecedented pressure from the West is more cohesive, consistent, professional work. This is the foundation for our partnership, and it helps us avoid groundless disputes. Yet, this is also an incentive to deepen research and development work, to analyse our potential for the implementation of joint space programmes of the Union State.” Dmitry Mezentsev emphasised that today the programmes of the Union State are a priority for the Heads of State of Belarus and Russia. Seven space programmes have been successfully implemented. Now the parties have launched the eighth programme — Integration-SG, the implementation of which is expected until January 2024. In addition, he recalled that the parties had entered the stage of implementing the programme to create the Belarusian-Russian spacecraft for remote sensing of the Earth with the highest resolution equipment as the basis for the future Belarusian-Russian remote sensing group.
The State Secretary of the Union State also spoke about the contribution of space technology to the actual economy, “Today we are well aware that without the development of joint space programmes, communication systems, fast Internet access, it is impossible to resolve the issues that are asked of us, in particular, by farmers and land surveyors. In order to increase the defence capability of the two states, to solve the security issues of the Union State, we will also not do without relying on the space potential.” Dmitry Mezentsev noted: The Belarusian ground-based space infrastructure has been successfully integrated into the Roscosmos system, “This allows us to solve the tasks that are set by the parties, and, of course, allows us to synchronise and reach common standards in receiving and distributing that signal, that information, which is, in fact, the main goal of the development of space programmes.”
Speaking about the development of the space industry in Belarus, Chairman of the Presidium of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (NASB) Vladimir Gusakov noted that our country has sufficient scientific, technical and human capacity, as well as rich experience of developments in the space sector, “At present we can say with confidence about the development of a space industry in Belarus, which involves more than 20 scientific and production organisations and employs about 4,000 highly-qualified specialists. There is also necessary infrastructure aimed at strategic research.”
According to Chairman of the Presidium, the promising areas include the implementation of the national space programme for 2021-2025, the development of the Earth remote sensing, the application of the results of space activities in various areas, including precision farming, digitalisation, and the study of Antarctica, etc. The topical ones also comprise the development of the national system of satellite communication and broadcasting, navigation, geodetic and mapping activities based on space technology, the system of aerospace education, development of new materials used in the creation of spacecraft for exploration of near and far space, participation in international projects to study the Moon, Mars and other space objects.
Vladimir Gusakov also dwelled on the planned joint programmes. According to him, today the academy is ready to come up with a proposal for the implementation of 15 programmes on various research topics. Including the creation of an allied electric car, a joint energy storage device, etc.
The congress included an exhibition of scientific and technical space products based on the results of scientific and technical programmes and projects in space industry, and also an exposition of technical and popular science literature on space issues.
By Vera Arteaga