Space Congress® provides a forum for presentation of technical papers, provides exposure to eminent speakers, and holds distinguished panel sessions in the aerospace and allied disciplines. It forges a bond between the member societies in support for the interchange of technical, scientific, and engineering information benefit engineers, scientists, educators, students, and other professionals on the Space Coast.
1. Host a locally organized, broad-spectrum technical symposium primarily national in scope, but also open to international participation.
2. Promote and support the activities of the technical, scientific, engineering, and professional organizations of this area to enhance the identity and professional stature of the CCTS member societies.
3. Provide technical paper sessions, distinguished panels, and eminent speakers to allow engineers, scientists, and other technical professionals to obtain advancement in their respective fields.
4. Encourage public interest and participation in technical and/or professional matters.
5. Encourage scientific and engineering student participation.
6. Publish information of value to CCTS member societies.
The Canaveral Council of Technical Societies (CCTS) was formed in 1959 to coordinate better communication and interface among the many technical societies in the Cape Canaveral area. This led to the establishment of an annual technical conference now known as Space Congress. CCTS’ first technical symposium took place in Daytona Beach on October 26–28, 1962 and was called the Canaveral Council Fall Conference. The program consisted of a get-acquainted party on Friday; technical addresses and technical workshops, a luau, a conference summary, and family activities on Saturday; and a golf tournament and fashion show on Sunday.
Two years later, the CCTS held the first event called Space Congress in Cocoa Beach, Florida on April 20–22, 1964, with the theme, “Where Are We Going in Space?” Thirty-one papers were presented and three luncheon speakers, an opening speaker, and keynote speaker addressed the assemblage. Eighteen organizations from industry, NASA, and the U.S. Air Force contributed exhibits. The proceedings were published.
Since 1964, all CCTS Space Congresses have been held in Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral, Florida.
In 1965, the growing list of events included authors’ breakfasts, a banquet, evening sessions, and an international session, an exhibitors’ cocktail party, and launch area tours. By 1966, the Congress had grown to four days in length and was being held on an annual basis.
In 1970, panel sessions comprised each day’s morning events, and on the day after the Space Congress, an USAF aircraft static display and USAF Thunderbirds demonstration was held at Patrick Air Force Base.
In 1972, special TV monitors were set up at various locations for observing the Apollo 16 moon landing and EVA.
In 1974, a press room location was added and CCTS scholarship awards were given.
In 1975, a youth science fair was incorporated as part of the Space Congress.
In 1978, CCTS introduced another popular forum attended by the public called “Meet the Astronauts” as a standing part of the annual symposium.
In 1985, the Congress added a golf tournament, and in cooperation with the Brevard Arts Council, sponsored a poster competition.
The last week-long Space Congress was held in 1994. Since that time, Space Congress has been largely inactive.
In 2012, CCTS sponsored a single-day Space Congress that featured technical briefings at the Florida Solar Energy Center in Cocoa, Florida. This event was well received and provided the necessary local interest for CCTS to begin planning for annual Space Congress events starting in 2014.