Now Open: IAC Student Competition!

The BIS and IET have teamed up to offer an undergraduate and a postgraduate a prize of £1000 and the opportunity to present their work in Washington DC!

The annual International Astronautical Congress (IAC), the world’s largest astronautics and space engineering conference, will be held this year in Washington, USA on the 21-25 October 2019.

Every year the IAC Student Paper Competition presents two prizes for best papers/presentations in two categories, undergraduate and postgraduate.  

The competition will be officially announced at this year’s UKSEDS National Student Space Conference on 2nd – 3rd March 2019 at the University of Edinburgh. 

The UK selection for the ‘individual’ competition is being run by the British Interplanetary Society’s Education and Outreach Committee. Because of this, the winners of the undergraduate and post-graduate papers will automatically bypass the heats at the IAC and go straight into the final round. To assist in covering some of their travel expenses, prizes of £1000 will be presented to each of the winners on their arrival in Washington.

Competition Details

  • The competition will be open for entries until Friday 29th March.
  • The UK finalists will be notified by Friday 12th April, and the UK final itself will take place in London on Saturday 4th May at the BIS HQ in London.
  • Each finalist will be invited to give a 15-minute powerpoint presentation, and then answer questions for five minutes; (the same format as the international final at the IAC).
  • To enter, students should email a one-page abstract (400 words maximum) to the BIS at, [email protected], by the deadline.
  • Once the abstract has been received, the students’ supervisors will be emailed to confirm their support for the entry.

The postgraduate and undergraduate winners of the UK competition who represent the UK in Washington will each receive a prize of £1000 after presenting at the IAC.


We give thanks to the IET, SUN, and UKSEDS for their support in delivering this year’s IAC Student Paper Competition.

Please see Abstract Guide prepared by UKSEDS:

The format of the abstract is:-

  • Student Name
  • Student Age on 1 January 2019
  • Affiliation
  • Student E-mail
  • Category (UG or PG)
  • Paper Title
  • Supervisor Name
  • Supervisor Email
  • Abstract

To Enter: Students should email a one-page abstract (400 words maximum) to the BIS at, [email protected], by the deadline.  


Heidi Thiemann

Heidi is a PhD student studying variable stars using SuperWASP at the Open University.

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