SpaceTech 2022, part of MIT Space Week, is the MIT Aeronautics and Astronautics Department's technically-oriented, future-looking event designed to build awareness around the present and future of space technology.
The event is open to the MIT community as well as current students at Harvard and Wellesley. Please register with your school email.
In person registration* | Virtual registration
*Pre-registration for in-person registration has now ended.
Due to overwhelming demand, walk-in registration is no longer available.
Speakers and Panelists
Jim Bridenstine Former Administrator NASA
Jim Bridenstine was nominated by President Donald Trump and confirmed by the U.S. Senate as the 13th Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Under Bridenstine’s leadership, NASA launched its new human lunar exploration mission, the Artemis program, managed the continued commercial resupply of the International Space Station and led agency efforts to partner with American businesses on the Commercial Crew Program. Additionally, Bridenstine established the Commercial Lunar Payload Services Program to partner with private enterprise in landing rovers on the lunar surface. During Bridenstine’s tenure, the agency has reinforced aeronautic development of the X-59 and , and the X-57.
Prior to serving at NASA, Bridenstine was elected to represent Oklahoma’s First Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served on the Armed Services Committee and the Science, Space and Technology Committee. Prior, he was a pilot in the U.S. Navy, flying the E-2C Hawkeye off the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier and flew combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. He later moved to the F-18 Hornet and flew at the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center, the parent command to TOPGUN.
Dr. Joel Mozer Director, Science, Technology, and Research, Space Force
Director, Science, Technology and Research of the United States Space Force, Dr. Joel B. Mozer has more than 30 years of space science, engineering, management and financial experience working space and ground systems for the Department of Defense. Before assuming his current role, Dr. Mozer was selected as the Chief Space Experimentalist of the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicle Directorate, where he led research and development of cost-effective ways to assemble, integrate, test and fly novel spacecraft and systems.
Dr. Debra Emmons CTO, The Aerospace Corporation
Dr. Debra L. Emmons is vice president and chief technology officer at The Aerospace Corporation. Before joining Aerospace in 2003 as a project engineer, Emmons worked at Hughes Space and Communications Company as a system engineering project manager on commercial telecommunications satellite development. An experienced aerospace leader with technical, management, and industry experience in the acquisition and development of advanced technology space systems, Emmons has more than 25 years of experience in systems engineering, technical and risk analysis, program management, and communications systems. She was a principal contributor on several key high-level studies and assessments that have informed strategic decisionmaking within the government.
Sita Sonty Partner and Associate Director, Boston Consulting Group
Sita Sonty serves as the Partner and Associate Director at Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in Washington, DC. Sreelakshmi Sita Sonty (Sita) joined BCG from SpaceX as Head of Human Spaceflight Sales and before that, Sierra Nevada Corporation, serving as their Vice President for International Business, International. Additionally, Sonty spent parts of her career at the U.S. Department of State and served as Director for Foreign Policy and National Security at Raytheon International. Prior to her time at Raytheon, Sita amassed over fifteen years of service as a Foreign Service Officer in Cairo, Baghdad, Tripoli, Zagreb, and brief stints in Beirut and Islamabad. Sita serves as Executive Board Member for Women in Aerospace, The Johns Hopkins University’s Alumni Association, the Washington Leadership Program, and served as Co-Chair of the Defense and Security Working Group for the Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU).
Prof. Danielle Wood Assistant Professor, MIT
Prof. Danielle Wood serves as an Assistant Professor in the Program in Media Arts & Sciences and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Aeronautics & Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Professor Wood serves at MIT as the Faculty Lead for African and African Diaspora Studies. Within the Media Lab, Prof. Wood leads the Space Enabled Research Group which seeks to advance justice in Earth's complex systems using designs enabled by space. Prof. Wood's background includes satellite design, earth science applications, systems engineering, and technology policy. Prior to serving as faculty at MIT, Professor Wood held positions at NASA Headquarters, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Aerospace Corporation, Johns Hopkins University, and the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs.
Nicholas Cummings Director, Civil Space Advanced Development, SpaceX
As the Director of Advanced Development for Civil Space at SpaceX, Mr. Cummings is responsible for the development of new missions and programs for NASA and other civilian space customers, including leading SpaceX’s successful new efforts in support of NASA’s Human Landing System and Gateway Logistics Programs. Prior to joining SpaceX in early 2019, he served under Senator Bill Nelson as the Staff Director for the Space and Science Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee, overseeing policy development for civil space, national security space, commercial space, science, and technology. Prior to his time in the Senate, Mr. Cummings worked for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center in avariety of engineering and leadership roles. He began his career integrating and processing International Space Station Elements and other Space Shuttle payloads and later led development of operations approaches and launch site architectures for NASA’s exploration programs and emerging commercial space partnerships.
Sloan Club of NYC
Virtual Lunch Panel
All times are ET
0900 - 0930 Continental breakfast
0930 - 0945 Introductory Remarks and Welcome
• Prof. Daniel Hastings (PhD'80)
0950 - 1030 Keynote
• Jim Bridenstine
1030 - 1200 Aerospace 10K Pitchfest Competition
• Moderators: Prof. Oli de Weck (PhD'01) & Prof. Zolti Spakovszky (PhD'00)
Potential Future Companies Pitches
• Space Data Relay System • Electrofluidics • Space Sweepers
• AstroQuote • BuildingPI • Galaxity
1200 - 1300 Lunch w/ simulcast stream (Sloan Club of NYC Panel) - separate registration
• Jenn Gustetic SM’07, Director of Early Stage Partnerships, NASA
• Farah Alibay PhD’13, Systems Engineer, JPL
• Patrick Zeitouni MBA’07, Head of Space Mobility, Blue Origin
• Moderator: George Lordos, MBA’00 SM’18, PhD Candidate, MIT Engineering Systems Lab
1300 - 1340 Keynote
• Dr. Joel Mozer
1340 - 1430 Panel
• Dr. Debra Emmons
• Sita Sonty
• Prof. Danielle Wood (SB'05, SM'08, PhD'12)
• Nicholas Cummings
1430 - 1450 Student Lightning Talks
1450 - 1550 Reception with poster presentation
Announcement of Aerospace 10K PitchFest and Lightning Talk Winners
Space Tech 2022 will be held at the
MIT Samberg Conference Center (6th floor)
Address: 50 Memorial Dr, Cambridge, MA 02142
6th Floor, Rooms DR5, DR6
Dr. Farah Alibay System Engineer at JPL, PhD '13
In 2014, Dr. Farah Alibay joined NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) where she has worked on several Mars missions including the Perseverance rover, which landed on Mars in February 2021, and the Ingenuity helicopter, which performed the first powered flight on another planet in April 2021. Prior to joining the M2020 team, she also worked on the InSight Mars Lander and its companion mission the Mars Cube One (MarCO) CubeSats. Dr Alibay is now the lead Flight System Systems Engineer for the SPHEREx telescope, which will help us understand the beginnings of our universe. Dr. Alibay received her Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in Aerospace & Aerothermal Engineering from the University of Cambridge before her PhD degree in Aerospace Engineering from MIT in Systems Engineering in 2013.
Jenn Gustetic Director of Early Stage Partnerships NASA, SM '07
Ms. Gustetic is currently the Director of Early Stage Innovations and Partnerships for NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate. In this role she awarded more than $300M in funding annually through SBIR/STTR research grants, internal innovation projects, advanced concepts studies, and technology transfer. She also currently serves as the co-chair of the Partnership for Public Service's Innovation Council (2018-today). Previously she has served in NASA HQ as the Assistant Director for Open Innovation, at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Ms. Gustetic holds a bachelors degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Florida and a master’s degree in technology policy from MIT. She was a future of work research fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School from 2017-2019 and she has also received an executive education certificate from Stanford University in Venture Capital investing. She has published numerous writings on innovation including in the MIT Press, Space Policy Journal, New Space Journal, and Issues in Science and Technology.
Patrick Zeitouni Head of Space Mobility at Blue Origin, MBA '07
Patrick Zeitouni is the head of Space Mobility at Blue Origin, responsible for programs for in-space transportation and logistics systems. Previously at Blue, Mr. Zeitouni helped create and led the Advanced Development Programs business unit, and also led the National Team to win the NASA’s Artemis Phase 1. Prior to Blue, Mr. Zeitouni was a partner at McKinsey & Company Aerospace Practice, serving NASA, the Department of Defense, and most aerospace primes and major suppliers. He supported these institutions across a variety of strategy, operations, and product development engagements. Before that, he was at TRW / Northrop Grumman where he led several activities within military and human spaceflight programs. Mr. Zeitouni received an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management and two M.S. degrees from USC, one in Electrical Engineering and the other in Astronautics, and a BS from Georgia Tech in Electrical Engineering.