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New Mexico State University

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X Prize symposium at NMSU features top speakers in the industry

A top state economic development official and several other prominent figures will address the First International Symposium on Personal Spaceflight scheduled for 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Oct. 6 at New Mexico State University's Corbett Center. After the symposium, KRWG-TV will host a reception in the Milton Hall patio on the NMSU campus.

akers will join former NASA astronaut Richard Searfoss and Erik Lindbergh, grandson of aviation pioneer Charles Lindbergh, who were already scheduled to speak during the symposium's plenary session.

Peter Diamandis, CEO and founder of the X Prize Foundation, will introduce Rick Homans, secretary of the New Mexico economic development department. Homans will give the keynote luncheon address on New Mexico's role in the next generation of private space travel.

Discussing the commercial space industry will be Clayton Mowry, president of the U.S. affiliate of Arianespace, a commercial space launch company sponsoring the symposium.

Steve Attenborough, Virgin Galactic's vice president for astronaut relations and grandson of internationally acclaimed actor Sir Richard Attenborough, will speak about the personal spaceflight experience. Virgin Galactic is a subsidiary of Virgin Airlines.

The symposium is hosted by the NMSU College of Engineering and organized through a partnership with the X Prize Foundation. It is part of the "Countdown to the X Prize Cup," a series of high-profile events Oct. 4-9 that will set the stage for the 2006 Inaugural X Prize Cup and Personal Spaceflight Expo.

The daylong symposium in the Corbett Center Student Union will actively involve the general public as well as the members of the personal spaceflight industry as they explore the personal role that the general public will have in space. The symposium is designed to entertain and inform members of the public about this next step in space travel.

Four symposium sessions will be held:
?Creating the Personal Spaceflight Revolution: The X Prize Cup - Taking Dreams to Reality.
?The Personal Spaceflight Experience: Space Tourism.
?Space as a Place: The New Economic Sector.
?Spaceports: Infrastructure for the New Space Economy.

A one-hour televised program featuring a discussion of the upcoming symposium will be rebroadcast at 8 p.m. Oct. 3 on KRWG-TV.

The symposium registration fee - $25 for students and $65 for others - includes lunch. For symposium updates and online registration, go to http://engr.nmsu.edu/xprize.htm. Information also may be obtained by calling the New Mexico Space Grant Consortium office at (505) 646-6414.