The event is intended to raise a chunk of $50 million to operate the X Prize Foundation, a nonprofit group that already has awarded $10 million to designers of a private spacecraft.
The Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering is run by a charitable company, limited by guarantee, called the Queen Elizabeth Prize Foundation.
Two Canadian contestants in the X-Prize competition (X Prize Foundation) have made attempts to construct manned sub-orbital space craft.
The two friends enlisted several other enthusiasts and established the X Prize Foundation in St. Louis, with plans to build a monitoring center in the St. Louis Science Center.
Last year on its "This Week in History" show, the channel did a segment on Erik and his affiliation with the X Prize Foundation, a group dedicated to developing private space travel.
He has directed the X Prize Foundation (Ocean) and has served on the Board of the Pete Conrad Foundation.
May 18 - The X Prize Foundation launches the $10 million Ansari X Prize, which is won in 2004, by Burt Rutan's SpaceShipOne.
The other causes are the Lindbergh Foundation, which promotes a balance between technology and the environment, and the X Prize Foundation, which fosters private space travel.
Adviser to the X Prize Foundation (Life Sciences)
He is a trustee of the X Prize Foundation, which promotes private space exploration.