Aerospace & defenseJune 5, 2018

Base 11 Space Challenge Aims to Empower Next Generation of Rocket Engineers

Dassault Systèmes will partner with Base 11, a non-profit workforce and entrepreneur…
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Dassault Systèmes will partner with Base 11, a non-profit workforce and entrepreneur development company for the launch of its Base 11 Space Challenge, a national STEM career accelerator initiative intended to grow the next generation of aerospace engineers with greater participation from minorities and women. Base 11 collaborates with partners from industry, academia and philanthropy to educate and transform high-potential, low-resource college and high school students into the STEM careers in high demand in today’s economy.  With a shortage of trained talent in aerospace engineering combined with a boom in the industry – especially commercial launch vehicles that rely heavily on liquid-fuel rocketry – Base 11 is embracing the opportunity to train and develop a sustainable STEM workforce that has benefited from hands-on experience and real-world training.

Photo courtesy Base 11

According to Base 11, its Base 11 Space Challenge will give universities an incentive to bolster their rocketry programs and empower students to learn far more than the theory of liquid propulsion systems by developing expertise in rocket safety, navigating flight regulations, demonstrating the essential skills of teamwork and innovation that are most in demand by forward-looking companies like SpaceX, Blue Origin, Google, Virgin Galactic, and  Boeing. Teams will be encouraged to conduct outreach and provide mentorship to community college and high school students to better develop the STEM talent pipeline that includes women and ethnicities traditionally underrepresented in STEM.

Al Bunshaft, Senior Vice President, Global Affairs for Dassault Systèmes Americas, says, “This is another milestone in our ongoing partnership with Base 11 to help build the workforce of the future.  Our participation in the Base 11 Space Challenge will give participants access to industry-leading collaborative 3D design and simulation applications that have long been used by industry for the design, engineering and manufacturing of most of the products society relies on today, while developing the engineering skills that are in demand by many large employers in the aerospace, high-tech and transportation industries.”

The Base 11 Space Challenge features annual competitions and $1.15 million in prizes for university teams developing liquid-fuel rockets. The biggest prize, $1 million dollars, goes to the university that safely launches a student-built, liquid fuel rocket to the edge of space by December 2021. Registration for the Base 11 Challenge opens this month.

Tune into the webcast launch of the Base 11 Challenge on Wednesday, June 6 from 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM PDT (Pacific Daylight Time) from Tomorrow’s Aeronautical Museum broadcast via live stream at: or follow on Twitter at #B11SpaceChallenge.

Webcast participants include Landon Taylor, CEO, Base 11; Dr. Peter H. Diamandis, Founder, XPRIZE, SEDS; Astronaut Dr. Franklin Chang Diaz, Founder, Ad Astra; Al Bunshaft, SVP Global Affairs Americas, Dassault Systèmes North America; Michelle Murray, Director, FAA; Astronaut Leland Melvin, who flew two Shuttle missions and later led NASA Education (he also is the only astronaut to have also been drafted into the NFL!) and author of Chasing Space; Dan Hicks, CEO, New Mexico Spaceport Authority; Dr. Forouzan Golshani, Dean, Cal State Univ. Long Beach, Engineering College; and students representing University Rocket Teams.

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