The Space Research and Technology Institute (SRTI) of BAS is organizing today an Open Day on the occasion of the International Day of Aviation and Cosmonautics. The Director, Prof. Georgi Zhelev, welcomed scientists and guests and recalled Bulgaria’s successes as a space-faring country. In 2024 we celebrate the 45th anniversary of the flight of the first Bulgarian cosmonaut Georgi Ivanov. Bulgaria is already part of NASA’s Artemis programme which will most likely become a stepping stone for a flight to Mars, Prof. Zhelev said and added that our country’s participation could ensure the flight of a third Bulgarian cosmonaut.

Scientists of SRTI are working on many projects in different fields, the director of the institute also said. The results of the scientific developments were presented by the scientific secretary Prof. Denitsa Borisova. Scientists from the institute are involved with equipment for measuring solar and cosmic radiation in experiments on the International Space Station and the ExoMars project. Together with the European Space Agency, the space greenhouse project SVET is being developed, the purpose of which is to grow plants for the astronauts who will take part in the long flight to Mars, said Prof. Borisova. She also recalled the contribution of SRTI in helping Bulgarian agriculture with developments in weed removal and remote sensing of crops.

The programme of the Open Day at the Space Research and Technology Institute continued with a visit to laboratories and demonstrations of drones and the stationary training simulator.