Stephane Caiveau is an entrepreneur with a creative spirit. He has more than 20 years of experience in business modeling, start-ups and management. He has worked for major industry giants including Air France, Decathlon SA and others. Today, he is a consultant at Caiveau Consulting focusing on clients in the aeronautic, biotech, energy and other sectors. Stephane is the Acting Minister of Manufacturing of Asgardia. In an interview with Asgardia Space News, he explains how planes fly, when humanity will settle on other planets, and predicts the launch of the supersonic era in the aerospace industry.
When you were a child, were you in Space exploration? Could you tell us more about your Space dreams?
I remember my parents waking us up so that we could watch Apollo 11 and the Eagle landing in the Sea of Tranquility together. When Neil Armstrong was sharing his experience with all of us, I could see the adults around me laugh and cry, and I knew I was part of something big.
That was it! I have always thought that one day, everyone will be able to walk on the moon, including myself. I was living the science fiction stories from the books I read, like ‘Explorers on the Moon’ by Herge, or Tintin’s adventure on the Moon. These were the most marking events leading me to dream about space and exciting my curiosity about life in outer space.
The more scientists study our universe, the weaker our belief in the existence of life on other planets becomes. Do you think we, as a human race, are alone in our galaxy?
As we know it, life is hard to imagine it on the planets we can now see. But our galaxy is so small. An infinite number of galaxies are offering infinite possibilities: life is everywhere, maybe just further away from the first 100 billion galaxies that we can see…
It is difficult to imagine now, but do you believe that humanity will live on other planets in the future? When do you think this will happen?
Humanity has always been able to dream about its future and develop, with time, the technology to live it. I believe that one day we will explore the universe and settle on other planets. I think I will live to see some settlements, but I think it will take a few more generations before humanity begins to use teleportation of life from one planet’s porthole to another.
Have you ever read books of science fiction writers as Herbert Wells, Robert Sheckley, Harry Harrison or the Strugatsky brothers? What does the future of the Earth look like, in your opinion?
As many of us, I love science fiction. Concerning Earth, I see us becoming more aware of our carbon footprint, and I hope we will accelerate our actions to reduce the damages we are causing to our planet. As technology will allow us to dream bigger, we will explore space. The ones who believe in this will see one humanity, working and living together, drawn to our galaxies. We will continue our technological progress and exploration, pioneering technologies and will achieve discoveries one after another. The ones who will want to remain anchored in their differences will continue to argue and fight about their borders.
As far as I know, you have extensive experience in the aerospace industry. How do you imagine the future of the industry?
We are entering the supersonic era. Because the commercial aviation industry is going to more than double in the next 20 years, it is attracting more capital. The flow of capital is driving development and innovations. We are making better and faster airplanes, as well as offering other products and services. Supersonic was expensive, but not anymore. The large demand will drive the prices down.
More and more companies will offer supersonic products. This trend is going to affect us, too, as the fabrication of these supersonic aircraft will bring us new technology, at lower costs. When NASA lost its budgets, it immediately opened the doors to dreamers who would not have previously competed with their governments. In addition, one player often drives only one choice. Multiple players competing with each other are always trying to find something that will put them at advantage, thus developing innovations. We are back in the race to space. Not one giant country against another, but one creative mind against hundreds of others. This excitement is bringing attention, more efforts, more results, more use, and lower costs. The race is on! Asgardia is in it! Watch us, we are coming with our dreams and our human driving force and, soon, some financing to implement our strategies and reach our goal.
How would you explain how a plane flies to a child?
I would say, ‘The wings carry the plane’. One side of the wing is longer than the other. When we apply a thrust to the plane, we are pushing the plane against the air. The wind travelling on the wing’s lower side lifts the plane, as the thrusters push it forward. Or: ‘The wings carry the plane, and the motors push it’.
How did you first learn about Asgardia?
I met Mikhail Spokoyny, Head of Administration of the Head of Nation, while working with him in California. He was passionate about Asgardia, and Mikhail passed the virus onto me.
Taking into account that Asgardia’s state institutions are now in the formation stage, can you please share some plans for the near future? What are the main goals of your work? How will you educate the Asgardian community?
By making sure that everyone understands our vision, our mission, our goals and strategies, so that we all work from the same infrastructure and foundation in one direction. Then I would like to help develop some working procedure, so that we can funnel the hundred ideas per minute of our citizens, and dispatch them to the right committee for reviews, and prioritization. Then, I would like to see a committee able to develop the corresponding law through a common process, so we do not try to reinvent the wheel and make it square.
Have you communicated with Asgardians citizens?
At this time, I have preferred to keep a discreet profile as I felt that there were too many good ideas and too many work directions. As the government is being shaped, a framework and structure is going to be developed to help everyone funnel their energy and efforts where they are needed most by priorities, so we can see significant progress in each of our working areas. We dream, we list our targets, and we develop solutions, so at some point, we will have our products and services deployed.
Any final words you’d like to share with all Asgardians?
Our contribution starts with unity, unity in the same goals, and development of the strategies and priorities. As Asgardians, we are not only implementing the tool that will help us to reach our goals and live our dreams, we are also living together. One person is an infinite pathway; one million citizens is more infinite ideas and pathways. We have to accept starting small and take our time to grow and develop our civil laws and interactions, to avoid wasting of time and energy on argue about minutiae, when we could be losing the Space race.