Two people talking on a screen of a laptop with an audience where the keyboard would be.

Registration is now open for EVO 2.0, IEEE-USA's third and final virtual event of the year, taking place on 3 November. The free half-day conference features all-new speakers, with a continued focus on emerging technology, future perspectives, and career-enhancing tips.


Enjoy a fireside chat with Nichol Bradford, cofounder and executive director of the Transformative Technology Lab, an international nonprofit. The organization works to improve people's health, happiness, and potential by catalyzing new visions, opportunities, and well-being technologies. Bradford, who says she is fascinated by human potential, adds that she has always been interested in how technology can help individuals go beyond their perceived limits.

John Yaglenski, IEEE-USA's director of communications and IT, is set to host the chat with Bradford. Yaglenski also plans to host a panel that explores where technology is today, where things are headed, and the future of engineering careers. Scheduled panelists include Amy Peck, founder and CEO of EndeavorVR; Maxim Jago, filmmaker, screenwriter, and chief futurist at GameFace Labs; and James Finlay, senior director of engagement and enablement at WorkBoard.


The first IEEE-USA EVO virtual event, EVO 1.0, focused on career development and technology trends. More than 1,000 people registered for it. The opening keynote speaker was rocket scientist Natalie Panek. She spoke about the power of perseverance, how she continued to follow her dreams despite setbacks, and how she is working on the next generation of robotics for space explorations.

Following her keynote, Panek stayed on for a fireside chat with Paige Kassalen, who helped develop the first solar-powered plane to circumnavigate the globe. Kassalen talked about her career and what lies ahead in space technology.

Then attendees tuned into a panel hosted by Yaglenski with Peck and Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield, founder of content-creation company Transport Evolved, which focuses on green transportation. They discussed artificial intelligence, autonomous cars, and other technologies.

Keynote speaker Nate Ball, Emmy-winning TV host and chief executive of Atlas Devices, wrapped up the event with a talk about innovation and inventions.

Building on the success of EVO 1.0, the professional-level EVOPro more than doubled registrations, to more than 2,000 people.

The opening keynote speaker, career coach Ashley Stahl, brought her perspective on uncovering opportunities.

Joe Grand, founder of the Grand Idea Studio, discussed computer hardware and cybersecurity.

Jago also hosted a panel on the future of technology and its impact on society, sponsored by the IEEE Computer Society. Jago and panelists Tom Conte, Forrest Shull, and Yolanda Gil explored what technology could look like in the years to come and how it might change lives. Conte is associate dean for research at Georgia Tech's College of Computing. Shull is IEEE Computer Society president. Gill is a director at the University of Southern California's Information Sciences Institute, in Los Angeles.

EVO 1.0 and EVOPro are available on demand on IEEE-USA's YouTube channel.

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Can This DIY Rocket Program Send an Astronaut to Space?

Copenhagen Suborbitals is crowdfunding its crewed rocket

15 min read
Five people stand in front of two tall rockets. Some of the people are wearing space suits and holding helmets, others are holding welding equipment.

Copenhagen Suborbitals volunteers are building a crewed rocket on nights and weekends. The team includes [from left] Mads Stenfatt, Martin Hedegaard Petersen, Jørgen Skyt, Carsten Olsen, and Anna Olsen.

Mads Stenfatt

It was one of the prettiest sights I have ever seen: our homemade rocket floating down from the sky, slowed by a white-and-orange parachute that I had worked on during many nights at the dining room table. The 6.7-meter-tall Nexø II rocket was powered by a bipropellant engine designed and constructed by the Copenhagen Suborbitals team. The engine mixed ethanol and liquid oxygen together to produce a thrust of 5 kilonewtons, and the rocket soared to a height of 6,500 meters. Even more important, it came back down in one piece.

That successful mission in August 2018 was a huge step toward our goal of sending an amateur astronaut to the edge of space aboard one of our DIY rockets. We're now building the Spica rocket to fulfill that mission, and we hope to launch a crewed rocket about 10 years from now.

Copenhagen Suborbitals is the world's only crowdsourced crewed spaceflight program, funded to the tune of almost US $100,000 per year by hundreds of generous donors around the world. Our project is staffed by a motley crew of volunteers who have a wide variety of day jobs. We have plenty of engineers, as well as people like me, a pricing manager with a skydiving hobby. I'm also one of three candidates for the astronaut position.

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