Including Everyone in Lunar Exploration

Tuesday 2 October 2018, 09:45 – 11:15

Location: Bremen Conference Center – DLR Hall


The international space community is focusing its attention on the challenge and excitement of establishing a permanent human presence beyond LEO.  Now 50 years after the first Apollo mission, the idea of humans inhabiting the moon is becoming a reality.   The Orion Spacecraft’s journey to the Moon in 2019, NASA’s   plans for the Deep Space Gateway, and a wide array of private initiatives are just a few examples of work that’s well underway.  The current international focus on lunar missions is fueling innovation – necessitating support from reusable lunar landers, In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) facilities, and possibly even the European concept of a Moon Village as an open architecture where all players contribute. NASA and ESA are open to investigating the role of commercial companies to provide payload delivery services to the lunar surface.  Today’s global space industry sector – traditional companies and new space — holds the keys to technology, talent, resources, and capabilities needed to usher in this next phase of human space exploration. Collaboration between international enterprises, both large and small, will be essential to achieve these goals.  Lunar exploration is the global enterprise that will inspire young students to choose an aerospace career and be a crucial part of this great vision.   The session moderator will set the stage by describing how the “lightning round” speakers will cover all aspects of lunar exploration – technology, programmatic, policy, economic/societal, and education/workforce.    The series of speakers– representing large and small companies, educators, and venture capitalists will offer fast-paced presentations in their area of expertise, and the moderator with facilitate questions from the audience in the last half hour.

Organized by:
IAF Industry Relations Committee (IRC)


Eric Stallmer


Commercial Spaceflight Federation,

United States







Dominic “Tony” A. Antonelli

Director, Advanced Programs Commercial Civil Space,

Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company,

United States





Full Bio

Tony Antonelli is the Director of Advanced Programs for the Commercial Civil Space line of business for Lockheed Martin Space. In this role, he provides leadership for the strategic expansion of Commercial Civil Space programs and capabilities, including innovation and development of space exploration programs, human space flight, weather satellites, and launch systems.

Tony is a retired Navy Captain and former NASA Astronaut who has accumulated over 4,700 flight hours in over 40 different kinds of aircraft and served as the pilot for two Space Shuttle missions: STS-119 and STS-132.  While serving at NASA, Tony’s leadership roles within the Astronaut Office included the Space Launch System, Commercial Crew, Capsule Communicator (CAPCOM), and Space Shuttle Propulsion.

He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Master of Science degree in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering from the University of Washington. He is also a Distinguished Graduate of the USAF Test Pilot School.

Tony has been honored with numerous awards, including a Defense Superior Service Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, two NASA Space Flight medals, a Navy Meritorious Service Medal, NASA Exceptional Service Medal, and the NASA Return-to-Flight Award.


Juergen Ackerman

General Secretary,




Full Bio

Current and previous responsibilities:

  • General Secretary of ArianeGroup and Chairman of ArianeGroup GmbH [since 2015]
  • VP Performance & Integration, Space Systems, Airbus Defence & Space [2014]
  • VP Strategy, Market development & Company Improvement for Astrium ST [2008-2013]
  • CEO of European Satellite Navigation Industries [2006-2008]
  • Director for Future Launcher Programmes, ESA [2004-2006]
  • Head of CEO office, Astrium ST  [2002-2004]
  • Director for Ariane 5 Plus Programme, ESA [1999-2002]
  • Various managerial and technical positions within MBB and DASA [1989-1999]

About me:

  • 55 years old; married  with 3 children
  • ISAE administrator
  • Member of the « Académie de l’Air et de L’Espace»
  • Auditor of the Cycle des Hautes Etudes Européennes de l’ENA, 2009
  • Auditor of the 54eme session of IHEDN, 2001-02


Maria Antonietta Perino

Director of Relations with Space Associations,

Thales Alenia Space,






Full Bio

Maria Antonietta got a Degree in Nuclear Engineering at the Politecnico di Torino. In 1988 she attended the first Summer Session of the International Space University (M.I.T., Boston, USA) and then she became a Faculty member.

Since 1986 she has been working at Thales Alenia Space – Turin, as Program Manager of major ESA and ASI activities related to exploration like ExoMars, Mars Sample Return, and the Aurora
Core Program. In 2010 she was appointed Director for Advanced Exploration Programs.

In the last years she has been Director Marketing & Sales for the ESA Exploration & Science Programs, and recently Director for System Supplies Operations.

Maria Antonietta is involved in different activities promoting the development of young professionals in the space industry.

She is author of several publications, papers, and reports, and Acta Astronautica Co- Editor.

Maria Antonietta is a member of different scientific committees, of the EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF), and of Women in Aerospace. She is member of the Académie de l’Air et de l’Espace and of the International Academy of Astronautics, and former Vice President of the International Astronautical Federation Bureau responsible for Technical Activities and IAC Evolution.


Oliver Juckenhoefel

Vice President On-Orbit Services and Exploration,

Airbus Defence and Space,







Nicolas Faber


Blue Horizon,








Kyle Acierno

Managing Director,

ispace Europe,






Full Bio

Kyle Acierno is the Managing Director of ispace Europe. He is responsible for executing business strategies with a specific focus on the lunar mining missions conducted in Luxembourg as a part of the Space Resources Initiative.

Kyle has been working for ispace for two years as the Global Business Development Manager. In this role he secured a number of space agency and commercial agreements while starting new offices in Europe and the USA. Kyle specializes in lunar commerce and in 2015 won the Space Generation Advisory Council’s Space Leader award.

Kyle holds a Masters in Space Studies from the International Space University and a Bachelors in International Security from Simon Fraser University, Canada. He is a member of The Hague Space Resources Working Group and the Moon Village Association.


Karsten Becker

Deputy CTO and Head of Electronics,








Ahsan Choudhuri

Director, NASA MIRO Center for Space Exploration & Tech Research, 

University of Texas at El Paso,

United States



Full Bio

Dr. Ahsan Choudhuri is Associate Vice President for Strategic Initiatives at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP). He is the founding Director of the UTEP NASA MIRO Center for Space Exploration and Technology Research (cSETR) and holds the endowed Mr. and Mrs. MacIntosh Murchison Chair II in Engineering.

Dr. Choudhuri is currently overseeing the development of UTEP Applied Research Institutes (ARI) and leads the university’s academic, research and economic development expansions in the eastern region of El Paso. The strategic focus of the ARI is to catalyze a regional talent and technology development ecosystem by providing strategic capabilities in Aerospace and Defense Technologies and Advanced Manufacturing.

As a Department  Chair from 2010 to 2018, Dr. Choudhuri led the transformation of the Mechanical Engineering Department to a nationally preeminent education and research program. Under his leadership, the enrollment in mechanical engineering graduate and undergraduate programs grew from 482 to 1426 students. During this time the department also became of the top producer of extramural research funding within the university, Dr. Choudhuri led the development of mechanical engineering doctoral program. Under the direction of Dr. Choudhuri, cSETR performs frontier research in aerospace and energy engineering while developing regional talents. cSETR supports an average of 100 students.

In his leadership role, he also formed strategic collaborations and partnerships with NASA, DOE, DOD, aerospace and defense industries, and other universities. This is reflected in the more than $30 million in external grants, contracts, and capital funding generated by his effort. Dr. Choudhuri has mentored 7 Research Assistant Professors, been the research supervisor of 20 PhD and 73 MS graduates, and co-authored more than 150 technical publications. Many of these students have been recruited to the job market obtaining positions within academia, federal agencies, and aerospace and defense industries.

Dr. Choudhuri’s academic career has evolved within the paradigm of UTEP’s access and excellence mission. He is a part of UTEP’s strategic vision to create abundant educational opportunities to ensure social mobility for the residents of Paso Del Norte region. Dr. Choudhuri has received numerous awards and recognitions including recognition for Faculty Award for Research Innovation from NASA and an Outstanding Leadership Award from UTEP. Dr. Choudhuri received a B.S. in Engineering from Khulna University of Engineering and Technology Department of Mechanical Engineering and an M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma School of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering.


Peter McGrath

Global Sales and Marketing Director, Space Exploration,

The Boeing Company,

United States





Full Bio

Peter McGrath is the Global Sales & Marketing director for the Space Exploration business in Space and Launch, part of Boeing Defense Space and Security. He is responsible for leading the business development team in shaping, extending, and capturing business in support of human space exploration missions. Prior to assuming his current role in July 2010, he was the program manager for the Army’s Brigade Combat Team Modernization (BCTM) Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) program and led the capture and program startup of the fixed price production contract for BCTM. He returned to this position in October 2009 after originally functioning as the program manager for the initial LRIP proposal efforts in 2007/2008 and serving under the Production organization supporting Non Line-of-Sight Cannon (NLOS-C) Special Interest Program proposal and the core development program restructure activities. Before working on the BCTM program, McGrath was the senior manager of Business Development for the Space Based Space Surveillance (SBSS) program and Space Situational Awareness (SSA) Programs. His responsibilities encompassed supporting the program manager and the Air Force in restructuring the program, implementing program best practices, supporting user community and Capitol Hill briefings, and creating solutions to expand the capabilities of the existing program to support mission area requirements. McGrath’s background covers more than 29 years in related DoD, NASA, and commercial businesses. Previous assignments included senior manager of Business.