The second annual Ohio Space Forum was held virtually Tuesday last week. Representatives from Ohio’s legislative, commercial, military and academic sectors gathered to discuss the state’s future role in space research and exploration.
Ohio State Representative Adam Holmes is the chair of the Ohio Aerospace and Aviation Technology Committee. He says Ohio has leveraged its strengths at every level to become a leader in space technology.
“The federal contingent that was involved in this affair with the governor’s office, with JobsOhio, as well as the assembly of state officials,” said Holmes, “it’s a unity of effort you won’t find nowhere else in the United States. ”
Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown told the forum that Ohio is a great place for the federal government to invest in aerospace research and development.
“This research is an essential infrastructure. This allows us to develop the technologies that will allow us to become a leader in the industries of the future, ”said Senator Brown.
Forum attendees expect the importance of Ohio’s role in space to continue to grow.
Next February, Dayton entrepreneur Larry Connor will pilot a shuttle to the International Space Station. This will be the first completely private mission at the station.
Connor and three others will spend eight days at the station as part of Axiom Space’s first mission. They will be spending time at the station working on medical research.
At the Ohio Space Forum this week, Connor said he believes the future of space exploration hinges heavily on private investment.
“NASA has done a phenomenal job, but it takes private companies like SpaceX and individuals like me to really propel this next big frontier,” said Connor.
Last month, Connor achieved another adventurous feat by taking a submarine to three of the deepest regions of the ocean. He will become just the second Ohioan to travel both on the ocean floor and in space.