Opening Event :: Registration :: Program :: Banquet :: Venue :: Accommodation :: Travel ::

The 9th Australian Mars Exploration Conference will be held in Adelaide over the weekend of 17th - 19th July, 2009. Presentations over this exciting two-day event will cover a range of issues concerned with forging, nurturing and developing the pioneering culture and methods required to explore Mars. This year, a second Spaceward Bound Australia expedition (SBA2009) will depart a fortnight before the conference, led by Dr Chris McKay of NASA's Ames Research Centre and MSA engineer and MarsOz project manager, David Willson. MSA will be taking a group of educationalists on a learning and development trek to Woomera, Arkaroola and the central Flinders ranges. They will examine sites of past and present space activity and those with Mars analogue significance and which illustrate major events in the history of Earth. A number of participants are expected to make presentations AMEC. This is the first time the Mars Society Australia has held it's annual conference in the same city for consecutive years. Download a conference flyer and help spread the word.

Dr Chris McKay Public Lecture
The conference will open with a free public lecture by one of the world's leading planetary scientists, Dr Chris McKay of the Space Science Division, NASA Ames.

'Results of the Phoenix Mission to Mars and Analog Sites on Earth'

When: 7.30pm, Friday 17th July
Where: Centenary Building, Level 3 - Room 16 (C3-16), University of South Australia, City East Campus,
Cnr North Terrace and Frome Rd, ADELAIDE. (Download pdf map).

Dr Chris McKay received his Ph.D. in AstroGeophysics from the University of Colorado in 1982 and has been a research scientist with the NASA Ames Research Center since that time. His current research focuses on the evolution of the solar system and the origin of life. He is also actively involved in planning for future Mars missions including human exploration. Chris been involved in research in Mars-like environments on Earth, traveling to the Antarctic dry valleys, Siberia, the Canadian Arctic, and the Atacama desert to study life in these Mars-like environments. His was a co-investigator on the Titan Huygen's probe in 2005, the Mars Phoenix lander mission in 2008, and the Mars Science Lander mission for 2011. He is the deputy program scientist for Constellation - the NASA program for future human exploration of the Moon and Mars.

Registration for AMEC 2009 is open. You can register online here or register by post by downloading a postal registration form. Help spread the word!

Last minute registration will also be available on the day.

A full draft program is available here. (This may be subject to last minute revisions). Confirmed speakers include -

Conference Banquet
The conference banquet will begin at 7.30pm, on the evening of Saturday, 18th July. It will be held at the beautiful historic Ayers House Restaurant in central Adelaide. Prior registration is essential. Dress is smart casual/semi-formal.

The venue address is:-

Ayers House Restaurant
88 North Terrace
Adelaide 5000
(Download a pdf map.)

The conference and Friday night opening public lecture are being generously hosted by the University of South Australia and will be held at -

Centenary Building,
Level 3 - Room 16 (C3-16),
University of South Australia,
City East Campus,
Cnr North Terrace and Frome Rd,

(Click here for online campus map or download a pdf map.)

(above) - entry from North Terrace

AMEC registrants have a range of different hotels and other types of accommodation available to them in central Adelaide close to the conference venue. Bookings and prices are subject to availability, do check conditions which apply prior to booking. We would particularly like to recommend the following:

For information on public transport in the Adelaide metropolitan region visit Adelaide Metro

Some useful travel links for online booking of airfares are:
Virgin Blue -
Jetstar -

For finding your way around Adelaide and other Australian cities, try  You can search Australian telephone directories online at