Aerospace Education Competitions (AEC) is the overarching organization responsible for setting  strategic direction for Space Settlement Design Competition® (SSDC) activities globally.

Our annual activities include:

  • Creation, modification, and ownership of the intellectual property (IP) used in all SSDC events globally;
  • Conduct of the annual International Space Settlement Design Competition® (ISSDC), a global Design Competition culminating in the annual ISSDC Finals
  • Managing and supporting the Qualifying Competition, and Regional Semi-Finals, of the ISSDC, for North America
  • Supporting our regional partners in the conduct of their regional SSDC events.
  • Assisting partners and other entities in offering Design Competition experiences directly to high schools and school districts

Activities that are delegated to specific regional partners include:

  • Managing and running regional ISSDC Regional Semi Finals, within the canon and storyline of the global ISSDC competition. Winners of these events earn a position at the annual ISSDC Finals;
  • Use our IP under license to run their own standalone Design Competition events, outside of, yet concurrent to, the ISSDC.

AEC is a non-profit registered in the state of Texas, and is a 501(c)3 non-profit registered with the IRS in the United States.

Images / Brief Bio’s of all AEC Board Members

John (Jack) Gafford

Event Coordinator/CEO/Judge



David Shaw