The 2021 International Space Solar Power Student Competition is a global, undergraduate and graduate level annual event presented by SPACE Canada, in partnership with the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) Power Committee, National Space Society (NSS), and the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC), is in its fifth year. This year, the competition involves student team projects that address sustainable and affordable space architecture and design that can take useful advantage of the energy option of Space Solar Power (SSP). The competition will encompass multiple disciplines but will be focused each year around a particular Solar Power Satellite concept. During 2021, the focus will be to address key challenges and new innovations/architectures of solar power satellites, with particular attention made to addressing life cycle CO2 challenges (including, but not limited to, the construction, maintenance, operation and disposal services of SPS satellites).


The competition is staged in three rounds:

  1. Initial proposals and selection of project teams to participate in the competition. The first deadline for participation in the 2021 competition is the development and submission of an abstract for a proposed student research project by not later than May 19th, 2021.

Accepted projects will be announced by early June 2021.

  1. Presentations of initial project results by the semi-finalists at the International NSS Space Development Conference (ISDC), this year held virtually on June 24-27, 2021 and selection of finalists.

Each semi-finalist project team will be required to satisfy the normal requirements for the Competition, and to submit a slide deck on the project for evaluation – as well as making a presentation via online presentations.

  1. Presentation of the finalists’ project results at the International Astronautical Congress, followed by the selection of a winner for the year. The 2021 International Astronautical Congress (IAC) is planned for Dubai, UAE on October 25-29, 2021 on-site.

These finalists will also be invited to participate at the SGAC Space Generation Congress (SGC) 2021 to join in workshops, conferences, and presentations.

Each finalist project team will be required to satisfy the normal requirements for the Competition, submit a slide deck on the project for an evaluation, make an online/onsite presentation and deliver a technical paper in the formatting and style of an IAC paper.

Prizes & Awards

  • Up to three teams will be considered for selection as finalists in the 2021 Competition.
  • Where applicable, two representatives from each finalist team will be compensated for their attendance at the SGC and the IAC. This includes reimbursement for registration, travel and accommodation (up to a value of $4000 USD per team).

In the event of a virtual SGC/IAC, cash prizes will be awarded for the competing teams to the value of $5,000 USD for first place, $4,000 USD for second place and $3,000 USD for third place. This will be in lieu of travel support.

  • Submitted papers and presentation slide decks from all three teams will be posted on the SPACE Canada website to become part of the literature of Space Solar Power for 2021.


The competition is fully managed by SPACE Canada. If you would like to receive more information about the updated 2021 SSP student competition, please contact [email protected]

For full details and rules guiding the Competition, see the 2021 announcement.

The deadline for submission of 2021 project team proposals is extended to May 19, 2021.