World Space Week

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World Space Week
World Space Week logo
Observed by Worldwide
Type United Nations
Begins October 4
Ends October 10
Date October 4
Frequency annual

World Space Week (WSW) is an annual holiday observed from 4–10 October in various parts of the world, including Europe and Asia. World Space Week is officially defined as "an international celebration of science and technology, and their contribution to the betterment of the human condition."[1]


On December 6, 1999, The United Nations General Assembly declared World Space Week as an annual event celebration to be commemorated between October 4–10. The choice of dates was based on recognition of two important dates in space history: the launch of the first human-made Earth satellite, Sputnik 1, on October 4, 1957; and the signing of the Outer Space Treaty on October 10, 1967.[2]

World Space Week is the largest annual space event in the world.[3]

Annual themes[edit]

In 2007, World Space Week was celebrated in 54 countries and in space. A total of 435 events were reported in 244 cities, with attendance of over 377,000 and media audience of over 26,000,000. Events included rocket launches, school activities, exhibits, political events, and special events at planetaria around the world. Under the theme "50 Years in Space", many events of World Space Week 2007 celebrated the 50th anniversary of the space age which began with the launch of Sputnik I on October 4, 1957. In space, Bigelow Aerospace illuminated its Genesis spacecraft with the World Space Week logo and beamed photos that week to Earth.[4][5]

In 2008, the theme for World Space Week was "Exploring the Universe".[6] In 2009, the theme was "Space for Education". "Mysteries of the Cosmos" was the theme in 2010. In 2012, the central theme was human safety and security through space,[7] promoting awareness of the roles that space satellites play in safeguarding the environment and protecting humans through functions such as Earth observation, navigation, search and rescue operations, and telecommunication.[8] Commemoration of WSW 2012 included media coverage about the historic launch of SpaceShipOne, Sputnik and future goals of the human colonization of worlds beyond Earth.[9] WSW 2012 was celebrated in 65 nations.[10]

Activities and observances[edit]

The World Space Week Association is a non-government, non-profit organization which is supported by national coordinators in over 50 nations. It is led by an all volunteer Board of Directors including Buzz Aldrin, Bill Nye, Tom Hanks, Elon Musk, Dorin-Dumitru Prunariu, Max Grimard, Lisa LaBonte, and space leaders from around the world. Its goals are to educate people around the world about the benefits that they receive from space, encourage use of space for sustainable economic development, foster enthusiastic education and interest in science and cooperation between nations through space outreach and education.[11]

The association provides resources for educators in grade K-12.[12]

The United Nations provides a Calendar of Events from nations celebrating World Space Week.[13]


  1. ^ World Space Week, General Assembly, The United Nations
  2. ^ World Space Week UN General Assembly
  3. ^ UN launches into World Space Week highlighting contributions of space science to humanity The United Nations News Center; October 4, 2012
  4. ^ "Report on World Space Week 2000/2007". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  5. ^ "UN Report on World Space Week 2007, ST/SPACE/38". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  6. ^ "Report on World Space Week 2008". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  7. ^ "2012 World Space Week". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  8. ^ The United Nations World Space Week UN
  9. ^ Celebrate Sputnik Day by Thinking About Space Sex, by Audrey Ference - The L Magazine; October 4, 2012
  10. ^ "65 Nations Celebrated World Space Week 2012". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  11. ^ "About World Space Week". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  12. ^ "Teacher Activity Guide". Retrieved 2012-10-12. 
  13. ^ Calendar of Events 2012 World Space Week; The United Nations

External links[edit]