Preserving the Race for Space 2024: From the Earth to the Moon and Beyond

Banner for Preserving the Race for Space Symposium 2024
Join us in Houston, Texas for a symposium on preservation of Space Exploration Resources! The NPS National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT) is partnering with Space Center Houston, Cane River National Heritage Area, and NASA to host a three-day symposium, which will bring together professionals with a stake in preserving what space exploration has left and is leaving behind. The symposium will feature talks held at the Space Center Houston, in Houston, TX, and tours of Johnson Space Center.

Registration Information

Registration is through Eventbrite.

Registration costs:
Regular Registration: $399
Speaker Registration: $299
Student Registration: $199

Symposium Venue Information

Talks will be held at Space Center Houston, room TBA

Parking vouchers will be available for symposium participants. Please email Catherine at by August 5, 2024 to get yours in advance. You will need one for each day and they will need to be printed out and shown at the gate.

Symposium Hotel Information

3000 E NASA Parkway, Houston TX 77058, USA
T: +1 832 864 0100

To secure reservations at the NCPTT Special Group Rate, click the link below. The discounted group rate is available through July 22, 2024. Secure your reservation early to ensure availability.

Booking Link:
NCPTT Preserving the Race for Space Symposium 2024

Symposium Schedule

August 13, 2024
8:30-10:30 am Welcome and Session 1
10:30-11:00 am Break
11:30 am-12:30 pm Session 2
12:30-2:00 pm Lunch on your own
2:00-3:00 pm Session 3
3:00-3:30 pm Break
3:30-5:00 pm Session 4
6:45-8:00 pm Thought Leader Program with Space Center Houston
August 14, 2024
8:30-9:30 am Session 5
9:30-10:00 am Break
10:00-11:30 am Session 6
11:30 am-1:00 pm Lunch on your own
1:00-5:00 pm JSC Tour 1
August 15, 2024
8:30-9:30 am Session 7
9:30-10:00 am Break
10:00-11:30 am Session 8
11:30 am-1:00 pm Lunch on your own
1:00-5:00 pm JSC Tour 2
6:00-8:00 pm Reception and Book Signing


Keynote speaker: Michelle Hanlon

Protecting Bootprints on the Moon: The Challenging Imperative of Extraterrestrial Preservation

In this age of unprecedented advancements in space exploration, the preservation of human heritage in space is an imperative that transcends national boundaries and requires international cooperation and collaboration. As the co-founder of For All Moonkind and a dedicated space lawyer, I will delve into the critical importance of safeguarding the sites and artifacts that memorialize humanity’s first forays off our Earth, starting with Luna 2 and, of course, including the iconic bootprints left by the first humans to tread on another celestial body.

This presentation will explore the multifaceted challenges associated with preserving artifacts and sites of historical significance that can be found off Earth. From the legal intricacies and the lack of a comprehensive international framework to the technical difficulties posed by the harsh outer space environment, we face a formidable task in ensuring these irreplaceable symbols of human achievement endure for future generations.

I will discuss the role of international cooperation in establishing protective measures, the importance of creating binding agreements under existing space law treaties, and the innovative approaches needed to address preservation in an era where private and national entities are increasingly venturing into space. I will also share the tremendous progress that For All Moonkind has made since its inception in 2018.

By examining the intersection of law, technology, and international policy, this presentation will provide a deep understanding of the urgent need to protect our extraterrestrial heritage. Starting with preservation, we can – and must -- build a legacy of responsible stewardship that honors the past and paves the way for sustainable exploration and utilization of outer space and its vast resources.

Join me and For All Moonkind on this journey to ensure that the footprints and history we leave on the Moon, and beyond, remain an enduring testament to human curiosity, ingenuity, and unity.

Presenter Talks will be 20 minutes with 10 minutes for questions
Speakers/Authors Presentation Title
Meg Abraham What's it Made of, What is it Not Made of, and How Was it Put Together?
Drew Adan and Cecilia Duykers Flown Flora: NASA's Moon Trees and Public Memory
David Bucek and Jordan Shelton Apollo Mission Control Center Preservation
Emily Carney "Space in the Seventies" -- Attitudes toward imagery of spaceflight during the 1970s
Jonathan Coopersmith Preserving the present to ensure the future of the past
Reagan Grimsley Collection, Preservation, and Migration of Aerospace Oral Histories
Loren Grush America’s First Six Women Astronauts
J.J. Kent, L.J. Costello, H.C. O'Brien, L.R. Casturi, L.A. Watts, A.B. Mosie, and J.A. Ziegler Stories from the Moon: The History of NASA's Largest Apollo Sample Display
Roland Miller Documenting Historic Space Race Sites Pre and Post Demolition
Jeffrey Nesbit Returning to Earth: Capsules, Airstreams, and Quarantines
Robert Pearlman Five Lessons Learned from 25 Years of collectSpace
Matthew Peek Making Space for History: Focused Approaches to Collecting Human Space Flight Archival Records
Paul Spana and Steve Pine Resurrection of an American Icon: Authetication and Conservation of the lecturn used by President Kennedy
Jim Remar Honoring the History of Space Exploration (Cosmosphere displays and initiatives)
Melanie Sanford Saving 74 NASA Chairs: Restoration of the Seating in MOCR2--Visitor Viewing Area, Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston
Mike Toth Doing More by Doing Less: Digitally Preserving the Space Race
Lisa Young Spacesuit Preservation at the National Air and Space Museum: New Approaches to Public Display
Zhang Zhihui and Zheng Yongchung Future Lunar Exploration Faces Potential Controversies: a Chinese Perspective

Important Dates for Speakers

April 25, 2024: Presentation abstracts due
May 10, 2024: Accepted presenters notified
August 7, 2024: Presentation files (ppt) due
August 13-15, 2024: Symposium
September 1, 2024: Papers for Proceedings due

Last updated: June 25, 2024