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This Week On The Space Show

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Mon May 7, 2018 4:22 am
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The Space Show, hosted by David Livingston at www.TheSpaceShow.com, will have the following guests this week:

1. Monday, May 7, 2018, 2-3:30 PM PDT (21-22:30 GMT)
Astrobiology, SETI and much more with Dr. Nathalie Cabrol.



Exploration, whatever its focus, is limitless, multi-facetted, and exquisitely complex. The understanding of how and why planets evolve, whether they could have hosted habitats for life, how climate change impacts their habitability – and for Earth, its biodiversity – are questions that need to be addressed through a synergetic approach by looking at many different and complementary angles simultaneously. Nathalie’s vision of exploration reflects this philosophy. Exploration takes Nathalie from Mars to the summit of the highest volcanoes in the Andes, to the bottom of lakes, and to the most arid deserts in the world. She bridges planets by deciphering their past from the present and their present from their past, and builds a vision of their future.

Nathalie has been a Principal Investigator (PI) at the SETI Institute since 1998. She leads projects in planetary science and astrobiology, develops science exploration strategies for Mars, Titan, and the Outer Solar System icy moons, and designs robotic field experiments. She explores high altitude lakes in the Andes where environmental conditions are analogous to early Mars. With her team, she documents life’s adaptation to extreme environments, the effect of rapid climate change on lake ecosystems and habitats, its geobiological signatures, and relevance to planetary exploration.

Nathalie was the spokesperson for the selection of Gusev crater as the landing site for the Mars Exploration Rover (MER) mission Spirit rover and is a member of the MER science team since 2002. She was the Science PI of the NASA Nomad rover field experiment (1997), and other NASA ASTEP-funded science and technology projects including Life in the Atacama (2003-2006) and Subsurface Life in the Atacama (2011-2015). She is the PI of the NASA ASTEP Planetary Lake Lander project (2011-2015) that explores the impact of ice loss on planetary lakes using technology developed for the exploration of Titan. Since January 2015, she is the PI of the SETI Institute NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) team that seeks to understand the impact of rapid environmental change on habitability and biosignature potential on Mars. She counts over 340 peer-reviewed publications and proceedings of professional conferences. She is the author of 3 books, and 7 chapters of books on the subject of planetary science and exploration, astrobiology, and terrestrial extreme environments.

Nathalie’s work is featured in the US and international media (e.g., Discovery Channel, NOVA, M6, BBC, National Geographic, Scientific American, Popular Science, New, New Einsteins, TED, Tested.com, other) and in popular books (e.g., The Martian Race, Gregory Bendford, Warner Books; Almost Human: Making Robots Think, Lee Gutkind, Norton & Company, Inc; Are We Alone? Gloria Skurzynski, National Geographic Society; Mapping Mars: Science, Imagination, and the Birth of a World, Macmillan).

Nathalie is the recipient of NASA and other research awards. She was elected Carey Fellow in 2007, Women of Discovery (Air and Space) Wings Worldquest Fellow (2005), and received the International Women Leadership Association Award in 2012. Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) has a central place in her work. She mentors students in the field and in the lab., and meets with them in schools. All of her projects involve a large E/PO component. To date, she has given over 400 public lectures on the subjects of planetary science, exploration, and astrobiology.

Technical Description of work:

Planetary geology, physical environment and climate, and evolution of planetary habitability. Exploration of extreme environments (e.g., high altitude volcanoes and mountains, lakes, deserts. Deployment of environmental and geophysical stations. Geology, geomorphology, mapping, robotic field experiments.

2. Thursday, May 10, 2018, 7-8:30 PM PDT (May 11, 2-3:30 GMT)

Tim Pickens projects and new.

Tim Pickens is a Commercial Space Advisor and Technical Consultant, an inventor, entrepreneur, innovator, engineer and educator. His business, Pickens Innovations, specializes in commercial space, technical product development and solutions, and business consulting for space and technical companies. He most recently served as Commercial Space Advisor and Chief Propulsion Engineer for Huntsville, Alabama-based Dynetics. Pickens is known for applying a lean philosophy to develop creative solutions and innovative partnerships to provide responsive, low-cost products and services. His 20 years of experience in the aerospace industry, specializing in the design, fabrication and testing of propulsion hardware systems, has earned him a reputation as one of the industry’s leaders in these areas. Dynetics brought Pickens on board in December 2009 as part of the purchase of the space company he founded, Orion Propulsion Inc. Pickens grew Orion to be a $6.4 million company with 40 employees within !ve years, working in all areas of the business to run a lean and innovative start-up. With his expertise and vision in the space industry, particularly in the commercial arena, Pickens was responsible for developing innovative space product solutions for Dynetics and expanding the company’s commercial space business. Pickens’ most recent role at Orion was as CEO, while he simultaneously served as program manager for the development of the reaction control thrusters for the Bigelow Aerospace Sundancer module. These thrusters operate combusting hydrogen and oxygen produced from waste byproducts, a technology that o”ers the state of the art in space-living recycling. Before founding Orion, Pickens served as lead propulsion engineer at Scaled Composites on SpaceShipOne, winner of the $10 million X PRIZE. He also worked for small hardware-rich aerospace companies in Huntsville. Pickens’ passion for rockets began when he was a small child in Huntsville and continued into his adult life as a serious hobby. He led multiple amateur rocket design eforts in his garage for community service and recreational clubs and worked as an independent aerospace consultant at night and on weekends. He had a long-time interest in studying applied engineering and science, but the desire to own and operate a space company would drive him to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. A sought-after presenter for his genuine, inspirational and humorous delivery style, Pickens is recruited to speak at conferences all over the country. He shares his views on commercial space at space conferences; gives advice at business forums to entrepreneurs who seek his unique small business success secrets; inspires people at motivational conferences to pursue their ambitions; and presents at various events about technology and innovations for which he cites many examples from his professional career and garage creations. Pickens has been featured in Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, CNN online articles, and on The Daily Show. Features include his serious company innovations, as well as his fun home hobby eforts such as rocket trucks, rocket bikes and suitcase rockets. He is currently building/testing a jet pack belt that can be seen from time to time#ying in Alabama lakes. He appeared on an episode of “Mad Scientists,” a show about scientists and inventors on the National Geographic channel, in November 2011.

3. Friday, May 11, 2018, 9:30-11 AM PDT (16:30-18 GMT)

Meet & talk with the new AIAA Executive Director Dan Dumbacher.

Dan Dumbacher is the Executive Director of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).

Before joining the AIAA staff in January 2018, Dumbacher was a Professor of Engineering Practice in the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics at Purdue University, where he taught courses in systems thinking, systems engineering, and space policy.

Prior to Purdue, Dumbacher served as the Deputy Associate Administrator, Exploration Systems Development Division, Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate at NASA Headquarters. In that capacity, he provided leadership and management as the Program Director for Exploration Systems Development, which included: the Space Launch System, Orion, and Ground Systems Development and Operations development and integration efforts. He led a national team of over 5,000, spanning all NASA centers and industry, and was responsible for a $3 billion annual budget.

During his career, he has received numerous awards and honors including the coveted Silver Snoopy Award and the NASA Distinguished Service Medal. In 2015, Purdue recognized him with the Gustafson Teaching Award.

Dumbacher earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Purdue University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He has also completed the Senior Managers in Government program at Harvard University.

Dumbacher is a native of Indianapolis, Indiana. He and his wife Lee have three grown children.

You can listen to the shows under www.TheSpaceShow.com

Source and copyright by The Space Show.

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