Canadian University Students Set to Test Their Experiments in Microgravity

Toronto, ON - Four university teams are set to compete with their out-of-this-world initiatives, as part of the Canadian Reduced Gravity Experiment Design Challenge (CAN-RGX). Two teams are focusing their tests on space mining, while the other two experiment with 3D printing in space. Results of such research will help in extracting resources, as well as building and refueling spacecraft outside of the Earth’s orbit. These experiments are crucial in advancing technologies that are required for establishing a permanent human base in space. The CAN-RGX is hosted by the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS-Canada), and in collaboration with the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) and the National Research Council of Canada (NRC).

This year’s competition ends in late July 2017, culminating in the long-awaited flight campaign to be held at the NRC Flight Research Laboratory. The four teams involved are: Team AVAIL (University of Toronto Institute of Aerospace Studies), Team COSM (Carleton University, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering), Team iSSELab (University of Alberta, Interfacial Science and Surface Engineering Lab), and Team STARFOX (University of Saskatchewan Space Design Team). More information on the teams and their experiments can be found on the SEDS-Canada Website.

“I have been extremely impressed by this year’s teams and the results of their labour throughout the competition. For me, this competition is all about bolstering Canada’s capabilities in microgravity sciences and I think our inaugural CAN-RGX challenge has certainly held up to that mandate,” says CAN-RGX Project Manager Roxy Fournier about the competition’s progress.

SEDS-Canada will be presenting the latest progress and results of this challenge at various international conferences this year. "We are scheduled to present the technical briefings of our successful collaboration with the CSA and the NRC at the International Space Station Research and Development Conference in Washington D.C., and the International Astronautical Congress in Adelaide, Australia. This is an opportunity to put SEDS-Canada’s initiative on the radar of distinguished microgravity science experts and representatives from the space industry, and to obtain feedback from international delegates" says Elias Solorzano, Former Chair at SEDS-Canada and graduate student at the University of Toronto.

CAN-RGX encourages post-secondary students from across Canada to fully design, build, and test a small experiment to be flown in the microgravity environment of parabolic flight, similar to the experiments done at the International Space Station. Students from all backgrounds and disciplines are encouraged to apply, including those outside engineering or aerospace faculties.

Join us as an industry partner!

Read about the CAN-RGX sponsorship opportunities  

Media Contact:

Roxy Fournier

Project Manager, CAN-RGX

+1 (647) 648-2318

Announcement of opportunity: Attend or Volunteer at Toronto Space Apps Challenge

SEDS-Canada is proud to announce that it is a Community Supporter of the Toronto Space Apps Challenge!

Running annually since 2012, the International Space Apps Challenge is the largest hackathon challenge on the planet bringing coders, designers, entrepreneurs, and makers together from across the globe to take on a series of challenges developed by NASA. During the intense 48-hour hackathon, teams will form and produce solutions that leverage NASA’s extensive spacecraft, celestial and science data. Last year, more than 15,000 hackers participated in 61 countries and 161 cities and created over 1,300 projects.

In our 5th year organizing the event in Toronto, we have two components of our event: a Hackathon, and a Youth Program (both are free and open to the public):

  • Our Hackathon: (April 28 - 30 hosted by The Working Group) Focused on collaboration in civic innovation to solve problems with the expansive data NASA has collected. We are proud to have had two teams’ solutions win globally.
  • Our Youth Program: (April 29 hosted by the Toronto Reference Library) Engages youth aged 7 - 13 in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) through activities run by Toronto organizations.

The Toronto organizers are looking for volunteers for both events. If you’re interested, please fill out the form on their website.

If you're a member of SEDS-Canada and interested in participating on SEDS Canada's team checkout the SpaceApps channel over on the Spacebar.

If you're not a member yet join here

Election Results Are In!

The 2017/2018 Board of Directors has been voted in by the chapter representatives! We had a record number of nominations this year, and we thank all the candidates who ran for a position.

Without further ado, your 2017/18 SEDS-Canada Board of Directors is:

Chair: Nicolas Lehman (McMaster)
Vice-Chair: Elise Harrington (Western)
Secretary: Adam Sniderman (UToronto)
Director of Finance: Harsh Bansal (McMaster)
Director of Advocacy: Hira Nadeem (McMaster)
Director of Communications: Sara Mazrouei (UToronto)
Director of Membership: Kimberly Lai (UToronto)

Thanks to all the candidates, and congratulations to the new Board, who will take over officially on April 2nd!

The Canadian Space Agency Wants to Hear From You!

And we've got a message.

Recently, the Canadian Space Agency announced that they want input on 3 Announcement Opportunities that they plan to release soon, in order to better develop industry capabilities in the space sector. While we support these initiatives, we are also taking this opportunity to make a few other recommendations.

Take a few minutes to send an email with this message template below to <asc.pdts_consultation-stdp_consultation.csa [at]> no later than March 17, 2017, and help us advocate for better opportunities for us students!





To whom it may concern,

The students of the [ENTER UNIVERSITY AND ORGANIZATION/CHAPTER NAME] Chapter of Students for the Exploration and Development of Space Canada (SEDS-Canada) strongly support the CSA’s STDP initiative. Canadian students graduating from world-class aerospace education programs often have difficulties finding space-related employment in Canada, not for lack of competencies and motivation. The CSA’s potential investment in the Canadian space industry will create further opportunities for Canadian students and provide concrete incentives for graduates to remain in Canada to contribute to the Canadian space sector.

The Priority Technologies presented in the CSA’s February 2017 Letter of Interest list several technologies related to rover and satellite operations, fields in which Canadian students have developed great interest and experience through student projects and international competitions. In particular, the Canadian Satellite Design Challenge (CSDC) provides multidisciplinary teams of students an invaluable experience in spacecraft design and development. However, since its inaugural competition in 2011, none of the Canadian-designed satellites have yet to be funded for launch. Meanwhile, NASA’s Cubesat Launch Initiative has recently released its 2017 candidate selection for launch between 2018 and 2020, comprising of teams from 34 American universities, high schools and not-for-profit organizations.

As such, it is our recommendation that priority be currently given to small-satellite and rover-related projects among the potential submissions for the recent Announcements of Opportunities. Furthermore, while opportunities offered to the Canadian space industry directly aid future Canadian graduates, space-related funding is lacking for undergraduate and high school students, and academia in general. We recommend that the suspended Awareness and Learning Component of the CSA’s Grant and Contribution Program be reinstated in order to provide funding for space-related initiatives that will directly impact the Canadian youth. We also call on government representatives to support future funding opportunities for students and young graduates on a broader spectrum of space-related fields, including space technologies, human research and life sciences.

Finally, we request that student representatives be invited to CSA Round Table events, to which participation has thus far been limited to government and industry representatives. Events such as these, which are designed to engage the Canadian space community, would benefit greatly from an additional student perspective.





SEDS Canada Announcement of New Membership System

Photo: Aerial, ground level and night views of STS-2 Rollout to and on Pad 39A, 08/31/1981. KSC, FL Credit NASA

To better provide our members with up to date information and opportunities we are rolling out a new individual based membership system. Students can go to our Membership page to purchase their yearly membership to get SEDS-Canada benefits. 

Chapters are still an integral part of our organization, and we strongly encourage you and your colleagues to start a chapter at your school if you don't have one. Moving forward the Director of Membership will coordinate with chapters to host local SEDS-Canada events and communicate directly to members national SEDS-Canada opportunities and events.

What you get with your membership:

  • Access to the Space Opportunities Resource Bulletin (SpaceORB) (Once it's completed)
  • Access to the SEDS-Canada Member's Forum named Spacebar
  • Discounts on SEDS-Canada National events
  • Discounted or Free registration to SEDS-Canada National Competitions
  • More to come!

The more astute of you will have noticed that some of the benefits of being a member are currently under construction so until SpaceORB is complete Membership will be 33% off!

If you have any questions regarding membership don't hesitate to send them to


Opta astra sequi,


Outgoing Director of Membership

A Message to our Future Leadership,​​​​​​

A Message to our Future Leadership,

SEDS-Canada is becoming the mechanism for students in Canada to build connections and develop professionally in today's competitive space industry. This is why we created projects such as our Young Space Entrepreneurs Competition (YSPACE), the Canadian Reduced Gravity Experiment Design Challenge (CAN-RGX), and our flagship event Ascension. To continue offering more opportunities to students in Canada, we will establish strategic partnerships with government, industry, and non-profit organizations worldwide. It is without doubt, that these goals cannot be achieved without the leadership of our Board of Directors. We are presently looking for students with the right stuff, ranging from high school to university, to join our next Board during the period of 2017-2018. Just as their predecessors, the new Board will work towards creating unique opportunities to shape the next generation of space leaders and explorers.

Through your hard work and leadership, SEDS-Canada will grow stronger and larger in membership, help empower student space enthusiasts across Canada, and push the boundaries of space exploration for the benefit of all Canadians and humankind. Join us today!

Ad Astra,

Elias Solorzano

Outgoing Chair, 2016-17


Four Student Teams Selected for the CAN-RGX Challenge

Last month, we received 21 extraordinary proposals from student teams across Canada who hoped to be one of the four winners to build and test a small experiment in reduced gravity onboard the NRC Falcon 20 research aircraft. With the help of experts in microgravity flight sciences, we meticulously evaluated the proposals on the basis of scientific merit, technical feasibility, project management and community outreach. After a difficult deliberation, SEDS-Canada is pleased to announce the top four teams who have been selected for the first Canadian Reduced Gravity Experiment Design Challenge. The four teams are:

Team AVAIL from the University of Toronto
Team COSM from Carleton University
Team iSSELab from the University of Alberta
Team USST from the University of Saskatchewan

Read the latest Press Release for more details on the four teams!

CAN-RGX Press Release January 17 2017

Nominations Now Open for 2017/2018 Board of Directors Election

Every year our chapter representatives elect the new Board of Directors shortly after Ascension (March 3rd-5th this year). Candidates should be current students and a student member of SEDS-Canada. Not a member yet? Purchase your memberhship hereApplications are due by March 10th!


The Chair presides over the Board of Directors and is responsible for ensuring continuous communication among directors, members, Chapters, advisors, alumni, and outside organizations. The Chair serves as the chief spokesperson to represent SEDS Canada to the public, media, and government.


The Vice-Chair acts as the liaison to the Board of Advisors. The Vice-Chair shall also lead efforts to organize and supervise fundraising activities for the Corporation.


The Secretary is responsible for taking notes at all meetings of the Board of Directors and maintaining a record of those notes. Additional duties include maintaining a file of all current records, and moderation of mailing lists.

Director of Finance

The Director of Finance is responsible for managing the monetary assets of SEDS Canada and shall oversee all financial matters. The Director of Finance is also responsible for the long-term strategic planning of finances.

Director of Membership

The Director of Membership is responsible for maintaining correspondence with all chapters and student members. The Director of Membership is also responsible for answering and supporting all requests by chapters and student members for information or help, and bringing these matters to the attention of the Board.

Director of Communications

The Director of Communications is responsible for external public communications and relations. Duties also include creation and publication of press release documents to communicate any news and developments within the organization or the opinions of the organization on developments within the space industry to the public.

Director of Advocacy

The Director of Advocacy chairs the Political Advocacy Committee and lead efforts to engage government officials, electoral candidates, and other pertinent entities for the purpose of non-partisan political advocacy and lobbying.

How to Apply

All interested candidates should nominate themselves by emailing with the following information: name, program & year of study, chapter, the position(s) they are running for, their experience and why they are a suitable candidate for the position.