The Starship Century Symposium

Dates: May 21 – 22, 2013
Location: San Diego, California

Is this the century we begin to build starships?
Why go to the Stars?
Can we?
Should We?

Starship Century is a symposium coordinated by the new Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination in collaboration with Gregory and James Benford, presenting ideas from their anthology of science and science fiction.

Gregory Benford: Gregory Benford is a professor of physics at the University of California, Irvine, working in astrophysics and plasma physics. A Fellow of the American Physical Society, his fiction has won many awards, including the Nebula Award for his novel Timescape.

James Benford: James Benford is President of Microwave Sciences, which deals with high power microwave systems from conceptual designs to hardware. Over the past 45 years of scientific research he has written 145 scientific papers and 6 books on physics topics, including the textbook, High Power Microwaves, now in its 2nd edition. His current scientific interest is electromagnetic power beaming for space propulsion. In earlier decades, he was active in science fiction fandom, and wrote science fiction in the 1970′s.

In coordination with the publication of the book Starship Century, edited by Greg and Jim Benford, the ideas of a 100 year program to create a starship are explored – from the development of an interplanetary economic infrastructure, to the structural requirements, the human factors and speculations on what we might find.  Speakers include some of the worlds leading scientists, technologists and science fiction authors, including: Peter Diamandis, Freeman Dyson, Joe Haldeman, Jill Tarter, David Brin, Neal Stephenson and others…

  • Scientists address the challenges and opportunities for our long‐term future in space, with possibilities envisioned by: Freeman Dyson, Paul Davies, Peter Schwartz, John Cramer and Robert Zubrin.
  • Science fiction authors Neal Stephenson, Allen Steele, Joe Haldeman, Gregory Benford, Geoffrey Landis and David Brin discuss the implications that these trajectories of exploration might have upon our development as individuals and as a civilization.