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Over the last 54 years, the story of the first and only cat to go to space has been largely forgotten. She deserves a proper memorial.
1,141 backers pledged £43,323 to help bring this project to life.

One year on & heroing some helpers

Posted by Matthew Serge Guy (Creator)
36 likes

Hello everyone!

We're coming up to the first anniversary of Kickstarting the project, so I just wanted to post a quick update.

Our search for a location to host the statue continues. 

We're planning on spending the rest of this year closing conversations with locations in Paris, before fully exploring the other option outside of Paris I mentioned in the previous update.

With the anniversary of this Kickstarter and Félicette's mission coming up later this month I'm hoping it will put this project back in limelight.

There are a few more opportunities in the coming months to present our search to some influential people and interesting institutions. This is thanks to the help of some of our backers.

So I just wanted to spend the majority of this update sharing a special thanks to these backers, as members of the scientific community, who've helped the project along the way. 

Philippe Jung

Philippe has a rich career history in aerospace and mechanical satellite design. 

After having taught in ISU (International Space University, 1991/2010) and in Classes Azur Astro Espace (1994/2009), he now teaches in Sup’Aéro, IFURTA (Institut de Formation Universitaire et de Recherche du Transport Aérien) and CNAM (Conservatoire National des Arts & Métiers).

He's a member of several influential groups such as the History Commission of AAAF (Association Aéronautique et Astronautique de France) which he co-founded in 1990 and has been the President since 1995; the IAA (International Academy of Astronautics), having been the Chairman of its History Committee 2009/12; and is a member of the editorial board of The Journal of Aeronautical History of the Royal Aeronautical Society.

And somehow, he also finds time to be a private pilot(!)

Philippe has helped our project by sharing it with his thousands of contacts in the scientific community and has taken our search for a location to industry events, such as the recent International Astronautical Congress 2018 in Bremen.

At that event, he also presented a paper on Félicette, which he co-authored with Kerrie...

Kerrie Dougherty 

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..is a consultant curator, space historian and author with over 30 years experience in museums. 

She was Curator of Space Technology at the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, from 1988-2014, and has also been a lecturer in Space Humanities with the International Space University since 2001. 

Kerrie is an elected Member of the International Academy of Astronautics and serves on its "History of Astronautics" and "Space Museums and Science Centres" committees.  

(And as a not-so-secret science fiction fan, she's co-authored several books on Star Wars and Doctor Who.)

Kerrie has helped us by sharing the project with the committees mentioned above.

Christian Bach

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Christian is working as a research associate at the Chair of Space Systems at Technische Universität Dresden, where he is responsible for the activities on chemical propulsion and rocketry. 

During his lecture on space exploration, he always used Félicette as an example for animals in space. 

In his spare time, he works as a volunteer in the Space Generation Advisory Council in support of the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. 

He adopted a British Shorthair and named her Kiddey. From time to time, she licks his hair.

Christian helped us get in touch with both CNES and ESA. Which directly led to us speaking to both Jan Wörner (ESA's Director General) and Philippe Willekens (ESA's Head of Communication Department).

Chris Welch

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Chris is Professor of Space Engineering at the International Space University in Strasbourg, France, where he is also Director of Masters Programs. 

Chris is a Vice-President of the International Astronautical Federation and a former member of European Commission H2020 Space Advisory Committee. 

He has a significant track record in both space education and outreach and in higher education, receiving the 2009 Sir Arthur Clarke Award for Space Education and 2015 IAF Distinguished Service Award. 

Other less-known facts about Chris are that he has written what he believes to be the first ever paper on the design of extraterrestrial gardens and currently has two payloads and a poem on the International Space Station.

Chris also helped us get in contact with both ESA and CNES, and has contributed other valuable suggestions for other potential locations to home the statue.

So once again I'd like to express my thanks to Philippe, Kerrie, Christian and Chris for helping us. 

As always, if you'd like to get in touch you can reach me at astrocatstatue@gmail.com.

Comments

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    1. Charlie
      Superbacker
      on

      Thanks for the update!!

    2. Louise Mc
      Superbacker
      on

      Thank you for the updates, I love hearing about Felicette’s statues journey 🐱
      And thank you to all the wonderful people who are helping share her story with the world.
      I look forward to seeing her memory honoured, in whatever way it happens 👍🐈🚀

    3. Celine77Celine on

      This sounds wonderful, and thank you for your great work on this - to all of you.
      All fingers are crossed for a good location for the statue :)

    4. Prime All
      Superbacker
      on

      Thank you all :)

    5. Sammy Wilsmore on

      It's truly fantastic to hear about the amazing people who have helped bring this project to life! Thank you wonderful members of the science community! :)