Bill Nelson ans Dr. Rohan Sood

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson (left) with Dr. Rohan Sood (right) from The University of Alabama at the Wernher von Braun Memorial Dinner 2023.

The annual von Braun Space Exploration Symposium was held Oct. 25-27 in Huntsville, Alabama. Dr. Rohan Sood, associate professor of aerospace engineering and mechanics, attended the event with conversations and panels focused on the theme of “Advancing Space: From LEO to Lunar and Beyond.” Sood was able to connect with educators, researchers and space industry leaders such as NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, who was the luncheon keynote speaker the first day of the symposium.

“Bill Nelson and I briefly talked about the relationship between research in academia and NASA,” Sood said. “I shared with him how the Astrodynamics and Space Research Laboratory at The University of Alabama collaborates with NASA and contributes to the future of space exploration.”

Throughout the three-day event, attendees were able to listen to panels and speeches on topics including “The AA Team: Leading the Way from Moon to Mars,” “Exploration Enabling Science” and “Charting a Course: From Exploration to a Sustainable Cislunar Ecosystem.” 

“Such discussions are critical to understand where we currently stand and what may be needed to make progress in space flight a success,” Sood said. “With the goal of having a continuous presence in the vicinity of the moon, it is imperative to understand the challenges that are being faced and the steps that are being taken to appropriately address them. As such, there is always an opportunity to share new, innovative ideas that can potentially be a solution to various challenges.”

The symposium was held at The University of Alabama in Huntsville. To learn more about the event and the topics discussed, click here.