University Letter

UND's faculty and staff newsletter

UND to host third annual Space Ag Conference Tuesday, April 4

Who: Grand Farm and the University of North Dakota Space Studies Program

What: Third Annual Space Ag Conference

When: April 4. Education workshops for students will be held from 9 a.m. to noon. Space Ag Conference will take place from noon to 5 p.m.

Where: Memorial Union Ballroom. Passport parking is available in the ramp located on corner of 2nd Avenue N. and Columbia Road.

Background: UND, in coordination with Grand Farm, is set to host the third annual Space Ag Conference, a half-day event geared toward agricultural exploration and innovation.

Admission: Free for all UND students, faculty and staff

The conference will explore the intersection between agricultural industries and space, applying space-based solutions to agricultural practices on Earth. Grand Farm hopes to help farmers produce higher yields with a reduction in land and energy consumption.

The half-day event will feature panels and speakers delivered by UND experts and academics in AgTech and space industries including Ralph Fritsche, NASA space crop production project manager, Barbara Belvisi, founder and CEO of Interstellar Lab, and Mike Vinje, NASA SBIR/STTR’s center technology transition lead at Kennedy Space Center, among others.

Present from UND will be President Andrew Armacost, UND observatory director and Assistant Professor Sherry Fieber-Beyer and Assistant Professor of Space Studies, Keith Crisman.

Speakers and panelists will explore the challenges of space agriculture while showcasing new agricultural possibilities through the lens of space. The event will celebrate the collaboration and innovation of industry partners, encouraging the next generation of innovators to break new ground.

Goals of the Conference:

  • Encourage innovators to dream about the possibilities in agriculture.
  • Highlight the possibilities of agriculture to high school and college students by looking through the lens of space.
  • Showcase challenges faced as space agriculture advances.
  • Speed up collaboration and innovation in the ecosystem.
  • Highlight how industry can work with NASA and the space industry and how space leaders contribute towards solutions in space agriculture.