Space Safety and Sustainability Project Group
 

 

SSS PG
Meet our Core team!

SSS Project Group Co-Lead
Mahhad Nayyer

Mahhad Nayyer

Mahhad Nayyer is an Astronautical Engineering graduate from the U.S. Air Force Academy. Presently, he is starting his PhD in Aerospace Engineering at Purdue University as a Graduate Research Assistant. His work primarily focuses on the broader field of Space Domain Awareness (SDA) and space sustainability.

Mahhad is particularly passionate about assessing the subjective and objective changes that emerging space economies can bring to the global Space Traffic Management (STM) framework and/or best practices. With his background in Astronautical Engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy and a Master's degree in Space Systems (SSA) from TU Graz, sponsored by ESA, Mahhad brings a wealth of diverse knowledge and ideas that are essential for ensuring space sustainability.

In last two years, Mahhad has been awarded IAF Emerging Space Leader Award, SGAC Nebula Award, and AIAA Ascend Diverse Dozen Award. He is member of several technical and administrative committees for IAF and IAA. Moreover, Mahhad is an active young professional in organizing GNFs and Special Sessions for different IAF Conferences including the IAC.

Project Group Partnerships Coordinator
Jordan Stone

Jordan Stone

I am a postgraduate researcher at Imperial College London focusing on signs of life on Mars. I have an interest in the value of the space sector for climate change mitigation and natural disaster management. I am also a member of the committee for the UK Planetary Forum.

Project Group Partnerships Coordinator
Tecla Trifil
ò

Tecla Trifilò is a Double Degree Space Engineering graduate from Politecnico di Milano (IT) and Université de Liège (BE). She graduated with a thesis which united Orbital Mechanics and Systems Engineering, and is now working as Spacecraft Operations and Flight Dynamics Engineer in the LUXEOps team of LuxSpace Sàrl, in Luxembourg.

Influenced by her father’s work in renewables, she has been passionate about sustainability from a very young age. She joined the space industry driven by a desire to be part of something larger than herself, and to contribute to a sustainable future in space, fostering both technological achievements and ethical considerations in expanding humanity’s footprint beyond Earth. She transposed this interest into her role as Partnership Coordinator for the Space Safety and Sustainability Project Group at the SGAC.

Having founded the first association devoted to the promotion of gender equality at Politecnico di Milano, Tecla believes in the power of inclusivity and diversity, and aims at promoting initiatives and partnership that focus on this fundamental goal for the space sector.

Project Group Partnerships Lead
Salman Ali Thepdawala

Salman Ali

Salman Ali is an Aerospace engineer from Pakistan and is passionate about education, sustainability and market opportunities within the space ecosystem. He is currently a Munich Aerospace PhD scholar at Universität der Bundeswehr, Germany, working on a solution for AI-based Onboard Collision Avoidance in Large Multi-Satellite Systems. In his free time, he helps Neutron Star Systems with technical projects, proposals and representation in Munich. Besides, Salman Ali serves various roles at multiple space sector NGOs, most notably as the National Coordinator for Germany at the Moon Village Association (MVA) and as Partnerships Lead for the Space Safety and Sustainability Project Group at the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC).

PR and Communications Coordinator
Subhrajit Barua

Subhrajit Barua

Subhrajit is a PhD scholar at ITMO University, St. Petersburg, Russia, where he is indulged in developing sustainable agricultural solutions for space missions. He is also interested in space omics and astronaut health.

He is also a graduate of Rencontres Exobiologiques pour Doctorants 2021, France, and has experience of leading organizations such as Life-To & Beyond, Spaceonova, and SGAC’s Mentoring Committee, where he is currently the Co-Lead.

Besides academia, he is also passionate about science communication, content creation, traveling, and photography.

Fun Fact: He has 3 mail belt asteroid discoveries to his name!

PR and Communications Coordinator
Nishita Sanghvi

Nishita Sanghvi

Nishita is currently pursuing a dual Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering and Systems Engineering at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and ISAE-SUPAERO, respectively. Originally from India, her academic journey has taken her to Europe, where she is committed to contributing to the global space community.

Nishita gained valuable experience as a project trainee at the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). Her work focused on the crucial star trackers and sun sensors of the Indian Data Relay Satellite System (IDRSS), a constellation of communication satellites. Her interest extends to CubeSats and SmallSats, which she recognizes as a promising avenue for democratizing space access and fostering innovation.

Passionate about space exploration that extends beyond professional pursuits, Nishita enjoys sharing her knowledge with children. Through workshops and mentorship sessions, she has inspired over 500 students from diverse backgrounds in her home country. Nishita remains dedicated to expanding her educational outreach efforts, aiming to reach more students in India and developing countries globally.

A firm believer in the responsible use of space resources, Nishita advocates for sustainable space exploration. She envisions a future where space research and technology benefit humanity and our planet, while fostering inclusivity and diversity within the field.”

Scrum Master & Graphics Coordinator
Dylan Greher

Dylan Greher

Dylan is a creative & transdisciplinary collaborator. He enjoys collaborating with diverse teams to address challenges to space sustainability & equity.

He is the founder & creative director of pale blue earth, an initiative bringing together artists, climate activists, immersive experience experts, astrophysicists, philosophers, adults & children; the goal is to enhance the accessibility of space exploration & to encourage environmental stewardship to support life on Earth.

Project Group Members Coordinator
Deep Anand

Deep Anand

Deep Anand is an enthusiastic aerospace engineering student from India. His academic pursuits are driven by a captivating interest in small satellites, space telescopes, and In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) – facets of the aerospace industry where his research and projects consistently strive to validate his deep-seated fascination.

Beyond the technical area, Deep believes in fostering scientific literacy with the use of ingenious and creative approaches for science communication and outreach, believing that captivating storytelling, art forms and engaging methodologies are instrumental in bridging the gap between complex scientific concepts and the broader public.

Project Group Members Coordinator
Mahima Gehlot

Mahima Gehlot

Mahima Gehlot is an R&D Project Coordinator with an Aeronautical Engineering background. Her primary research interests are hypersonic flows, aviation and spacecraft design, and planetary defence. She also works as a citizen scientist for ESA’s CNS project. Her desire to become an astronaut is mirrored in her scientific work. She is an active climate change enthusiast who works for Greener is Cleaner as an article writer for a website and magazine and social media manager for the GiC India channel. She is an active volunteer for a variety of programmes run by the Society for Space Education Research and Development (SSERD) and SGAC. She enjoys reading and teaching others about the space sector.

Newsletter Team Member/ Blog Writer
Julia Alvarez Vallero

Julia Alvarez Vallero

Julia is an electronic engineer from Argentina, graduated from National University of Córdoba. She has just completed a Master’s degree in Renewable Energies, Climate Change and Sustainability in the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain. She worked as power design engineer in the space area, for INVAP, an Argentinian company dedicated to the design and manufacture of complex technological systems. She is passionate about space, and works to encourage youth to follow the space path through her project, MELIORA. Currently, she is working at University of Sant’Anna, Pisa in a project of Air Breathing Electric Propulsion and she is about to pursue a PhD.

Newsletter Team Member/ Blog Writer
Mekhala Hejib

Mekhala Hejib

Mekhala is an aerospace engineering student from India with a deep fascination for the universe. Her passion lies in unravelling the mysteries of space through rockets, space science, and astronomy. An inquisitive reader, Mekhala devours various forms of space-related content, feeding her curiosity about the cosmos and is putting use of her literature skills as the editor of her college aerospace newsletter .

Driven by a firm belief in the necessity of space exploration for humanity’s future. Her expertise in aerospace engineering, coupled with her research interests, fuels her desire to contribute to the advancement of scientific exploration in space.

Newsletter Coordinator
Zain Ahmed

Zain Ahmed

Zain Ahmad, an Aerospace Engineer by profession, graduated with distinction from UNSW Canberra, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering. With a keen interest in Aero Propulsion, he has been an active member of organizations like the International Society of Air Breathing Engines (ISABE) since 2019.

Throughout his professional journey, Zain has pursued various courses in Aviation Management and SpaceTech. He has demonstrated leadership abilities by overseeing personnel and supervising the maintenance and overhauls of Aero Engines. For nearly two years, he led operations on Flight Lines. Recently, Zain has been instrumental in establishing and maintaining communications with public, private, and academic entities to foster collaboration within the Aerospace and IT Technopark Ecosystem.

Outside of work, his hobbies include book reading, star gazing, plane spotting, badminton, and golf.

Research Coordinator
Nathalie Bergmann

A highly motivated aerospace engineer with a distinguished background in both technical expertise and program management, Nathalie brings a strong academic foundation to the table. She holds a B.Sc. in Aerospace Engineering with honors from the University of Stuttgart and is currently finishing her M.Sc. in Aerospace with a major in space systems, obtained through a prestigious double degree program between the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and ISAE-SUPAERO.

Nathalie’s experience extends beyond the classroom. While pursuing her degrees, she gained valuable industry experience through roles such as mission manager for payloads onboard a space capsule and program manager for a space capsule program. Her passion for sustainability is further evidenced by her research on eco-design principles for space applications.

Extensive experience studying and working abroad have cultivated a well-rounded individual with a global perspective. This experience enables her to excel in collaborative and international environments.

Research Coordinator
Javier Maldonado Romo

Javier Maldonado Romo

Javier is an enthusiast dedicated to contributing to advancing humanity, viewing knowledge as a strategy to generate economic and intellectual value to enhance the quality of life on Earth. He has an exciting interest in science and engineering, focusing on space activities with a sustainable perspective because a space activity must consider sustainability from conception to implementation. Javier has an academic background, holding a Ph.D. in micro aerial vehicles, a master’s degree in autonomous machines, and a bachelor’s degree in telecommunications and sustainable management for developing sustainable solutions.

He has professional experience in digital manufacturing, utilizing digital technologies for different tasks using artificial intelligence and extended reality. One of his greatest passions is researching to employ circular economy models to extend the lifespan of waste and integrate it into value chains both on Earth and in space.

Meet Our Project Leads!

Essay Competition Project Lead
Zain Ahmed

Zain Ahmed

Zain Ahmad, an Aerospace Engineer by profession, graduated with distinction from UNSW Canberra, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering. With a keen interest in Aero Propulsion, he has been an active member of organizations like the International Society of Air Breathing Engines (ISABE) since 2019.

Throughout his professional journey, Zain has pursued various courses in Aviation Management and SpaceTech. He has demonstrated leadership abilities by overseeing personnel and supervising the maintenance and overhauls of Aero Engines. For nearly two years, he led operations on Flight Lines. Recently, Zain has been instrumental in establishing and maintaining communications with public, private, and academic entities to foster collaboration within the Aerospace and IT Technopark Ecosystem.

Outside of work, his hobbies include book reading, star gazing, plane spotting, badminton, and golf.

UNESCO World Heritage Site Project Lead
Selene Cannelli

Selene Cannelli

An archaeologist working in space, outside academia she’s a rugby athlete.

Selene has a unique background that has taken her from the study of archaeology and molecular biology to the vastness of space.

She’s a PhD student at Tokyo Tech, studying the origins of life on Earth and beyond, interested in exploring whether minerals could have played a role in the creation of life.

She has a passion for travel, which has led to a strong appreciation for other cultures and environmental conservation. Now, she hopes to protect our planet orbits, by taking an archaeological approach. Selene’s current project, Earth’s orbits as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, focuses on the critical issue of space debris and how it endangers Earth’s orbits, as well as our future in space and on Earth. The project aims to protect this environment, securing a flourishing space economy and contributing to the democratization of space. This work also advocates for outer space environmental and human heritage protection policies.

ICASI (OOS) Project Lead
Virgile Gautier

Virgile Gautier

Virgile is the Founder of ICASI, a project from the SGAC to propose a standardization of interfaces for on-orbit servicing. His double engineering studies and his experience in satellites and rocket operations in France and in Germany gave him keys to understand the challenges and needs to implement a sustainable space industry.

Space Debris Removal Project Lead
Stirling Forbes

Stirling Forbes

Stirling Forbes is a passionate and dedicated space entrepreneur with a strong commitment to the commercialization of space technology. He has established SpectraNet, a space radio frequency spectrum brokerage, and is leading the creation of a flagship space sustainability NGO project within the SGAC, working to tackle the threat of space debris to the space industry through promoting the growth of a commercial ecosystem.

As the founder and CEO of Forbes-Space, the global dedicated space sponsorship, partnership and growth services agency, he is pioneering the adoption of sponsorship in its different forms to the space sector as he sees it as a vital component for the full commercialization of space.

Stirling has a Master of Science in Space Studies degree from the International Space University in Strasbourg, and a BSc in the History and Philosophy of Science from University College London.

Over the past five years, he has cultivated an expansive network in the space, commercial, and marketing sectors, fostering thousands of relationships with influential C-Suite individuals.

As an active contributor to the space industry discourse, Stirling has authored and contributed to numerous thought papers on the future of the sector and methods to accelerate its growth. In addition, he has made contributions to respected reports on the satellite ecosystem within the space industry.

UN SDG Project Co-Lead
Niki Sajjad

Niki Sajjad

Niki is a PhD candidate and enthusiastic space engineer with an electrical engineering background, highly motivated for working toward sustainability to serve humanity and pave the way for the next generations to become key players in the space sector, especially in non-space-faring countries. She has been a member of three student satellite projects since 2017 as an ADCS and HIL engineer, currently receiving data from one of them orbiting Earth as a result of an international collaboration.

Niki has been an active member of SGAC since 2020, is the national point of contact for Iran, and currently leads the UN SDGs project from Space Safety and Sustainability Project Group.

UN SDG Project Co-Lead
Zineb Bouaoudate

Born in Morocco, she is an aerospace engineer with an unswerving passion for aviation that began in her youth, watching planes glide above her neighborhood near the airport. Her educational journey took her across Morocco and France, culminating in a Master’s thesis focused on a satellite project at Ecole Polytechnique de Paris (l’X) for the Ministry of Defense.

Beyond her aerospace expertise, her diverse interests span from artistry and culinary arts to professional networking, multilingual proficiency, and a dedicated commitment to volunteerism. Her leadership prowess is underscored by her past roles as General Secretary and International Relations Coordinator in her university’s student council and as President of the Press Club.

Today, she serves as an Aeronautical Engineer at Airbus, specializing as a Mechanical Stress Engineer for all in-service aircraft programs. Notably, she was chosen as an Airbassador to represent Airbus, reaffirming her dedication to the aerospace industry.

Her mission is to make space accessible to all, advocating for a sustainable future for space while fostering youth opportunities through collaboration with local academic institutions and space-focused organizations. Recognized for her expertise and dedication, she also serves as the National Point of Contact for Morocco within Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC) as well as she holds the esteemed role of co-lead within the Space Safety and Sustainability Project Group for United Nations initiatives through SGAC.

Overall, she is a highly accomplished and resolute professional, determined to advance aerospace and space sectors on a global scale. Her aspiration extends beyond borders, aiming to leave an indelible mark not only on her cherished Morocco and the vast African continent but also on the world itself through her relentless efforts and unwavering dedication.