For those of you who have been following the progress of the film I’m involved with, 'I want to be an Astronaut', you may already know about the major screening we have tomorrow at George Washington University to tip off this year’s Humans 2 Mars Summit hosted by ExploreMars.
Wait…Humans 2 Mars? What’s that?
From the globally-renowned science/space journal SpaceRef:Explore Mars is pleased to announce that the 2014 Humans to Mars (H2M) Summit will be taking place on April 22-24, 2014 at George Washington University (GW). 2014 H2M is being co-sponsored by the George Washington University and the Space Policy Institute at GW.
2014 H2M will continue the discussion started at the 2013 H2M Summit to explore how humanity can land on Mars by the 2030’s. This event will feature discussions on new concepts of Mars architectures, updates on science missions and objectives, planetary protection, In Situ Resource Utilization, human factors, international cooperation, and a myriad of other topics. This event will also pay special attention to engaging the public. “The first day of the conference will be specially designed to engage students and the public,” said Explore Mars Executive Director, Chris Carberry. “We intend to fill the 1500 seat Lisner Auditorium with students, the general public, and space professionals and we will present many inspiring speakers.” 2014 H2M will feature some of the most prominent people in space exploration as well as policy experts, business leaders, media personalities, international representatives, academic leaders, and members of the entertainment community.
2014 H2M will be a highly interactive conference. In addition to the onsite audience, we anticipate having over a thousand schools viewing H2M as well as tens of thousands of individuals from around the world viewing and participating online in the event. While H2M will be based in Washington, DC, our goal is to create a worldwide Mars exploration event.
According to Scott Pace, Director of the Space Policy Institute, “The Human2Mars Summit has become a premier event for everyone involved in the exploration of Mars. We’re honored that Explore Mars will be returning to the George Washington University.”
What is ‘I want to be an Astronaut’ and why is it important?
Read our mission statement HERE.
After we had our ‘orbital premiere' in space (low earth orbit) aboard the ISS, we’ve been working toward private screenings whereby we could garner the attention of the men and women who directly influence space policy, NASA’s impact on our world, space exploration as a whole, and most importantly, this generation and generations to come.
The goal: draw attention to the importance of STEAM education as it relates to our nation’s ability to remain on the cutting edge of science and technology - creating the jobs of the future - and the need for a vibrant space program to provide the context needed for young people to pursue these challenging and exciting career fields. We also point out where we might be headed if we fail to do so."We’re on a trajectory to screen the film around the country, with discussions through multiple on and offline platforms whereby students, educators, legislators, and the overall voting public can participate in an open forum.
To achieve this, we aim to partner and collaborate with like-minded organizations that share in our vision to educate the public, inspire young people, and engage in meaningful discussion about the future of the space program - along with the Earthly gains from these pursuits which improve our everyday lives.
Not only do we want to stimulate conversation, but we love this film and are excited to share it with you! What we’ve created is an engaging, emotional, and practical means for the justification of a national focus on STEAM education and science literacy. Childhood dreams of becoming an astronaut are not simply a cherished past time; they embody the long-held, deep-rooted legacy of exploration from which those before us deemed it a global priority.
The world continues to benefit from space exploration. However, American tax dollars and an increased NASA budget are not the only solutions. Audacious visions and political will are fueled by the voices and aspirations of the people for which NASA operates. Our goal with this film and the conversations that follow is to remind everyone what NASA means to the world, re-ignite those dreams again, and explore space together.”
After the screening of the film, a panel discussion will follow involving our featured guests:
Miles O’Brien is an independent American broadcast news journalist specializing in science, technology, and aerospace.
Gregory Cecil is a Former Senior Aerocomposite Technician, United Space Alliance
David J. Ruck, Director of IWTBAA, is a Michigan native that moved to the Washington, DC area to pursue a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) at American University in Film & Media Arts, which he received in 2014.
Dr. James B Garvin served as NASA’s Chief Scientist from October 2004 - September 2005 and is known for his foundational work in NASA’s Mars explorational programs.
at Space Shuttle Discovery (OV-103)
<3 (at Space Shuttle Discovery (OV-103))
“You’re an interesting species. An interesting mix. You’re capable of such beautiful dreams, and such horrible nightmares. You feel so lost, so cut off, so alone, only you’re not. See, in all our searching, the only thing we’ve found that makes the emptiness bearable, is each other.” Carl Sagan, Contact
Yes, today is easter. No, I do not care about this. Yes, today is 4.20 . No, I smoke every day, but I don’t care about this either. Today is a meaningful day to me for other reasons. Meaningful reasons.
This day is so bittersweet to me. Today would have been special, and I guess in a lot of ways it still is because it reminds me of how different my life could be right now. For the past four years I would avoid everyone on this day.
Although I am known to be a very laid back person, and I am for the most part, I stress out severely about keeping schedules. I obsessively plan things and make lists about everything. I missed my yoga class this morning because I was so exhausted that I slept through my alarm. This is something that could easily throw off my whole mood today. However, I find myself seeing it as a reminder that I need to relax sometimes. That I can’t plan for every little thing that happens in my life, and that things like this are not necessary to obsess over. It will be alright. I’m alright.
I have had over four years to think about this and to feel all these different emotions over it. I don’t hold onto the regret I once felt; it’s more of a lingering sadness now. I noticed a real change in how I feel about it, and how I let it affect me when I went to Vermont alone for this weekend last year. I was doing very well at that point in my life, but I was still alone. In a lot of ways this trip was a turning point for me, and how I deal with my emotions. The beauty that I was submersed in, and all the time I spent thinking and crying and feeling caused me to realize so many things. This is when I decided to be more open about the way I feel, and stop trying to bury and hide all of my emotions. I wanted to start being more honest about everything. I love my life, and I know that it could be very different had things not happened the way they did, but it could be very different for a lot of other reasons too. I’m grateful for everything I’ve experienced, and I am grateful to be living.
"I love you. I want you to think about how fragile we are, how our brains have been hard wired for empathy due to our survival nature and the passion we pour into making sure we produce to maintain our species. It’s natural for you to "feel", let alone feel lingering sadness.
Just as easy as it is for us to extinguish life, it’s just as easy to create it, and we have the tools necessary to do so. Your time as a mother will come. And it will be beautiful. And if nature allows, I’ll be there, responsible for this and looking ahead at a new beginning for our life together.” -Rich
I am so fortunate that this man came into my life when he did. The love he makes me feel is insurmountable by any other feeling I’ve ever experienced.
Happy Birthday Baby. I hold you here on my heart, forever and always.
I’m very attracted to things that I can’t defineRaf Simons (via thefreshprinceofbelarus)
Weekends with this child of mine are beyond a simple adjective I can toss out unto the blogosphere. The time I spend with my son is always inspiring and constantly reminds me of the future I aim to help create for him and his generation.
I’m so in love with these guys.
Sometimes I wonder if the world’s so small, that we can never get away from the sprawl. #philly
This is my fucking favourite
i think this all the time
Never go on trips with anyone you do not love.Ernest Hemingway (via blankonblank)
Crater lake at sunset. I feel spoiled out here.
Regarding the recent NASA Kepler discovery of what is being dubbed the closest “Earth-like” or “Earth twin” planet…
"This planet Kepler-186f orbits a star that’s cooler and dimmer than the sun. So while we may have found a planet that’s the same size as Earth, and receives the same amount of energy to what Earth receives, it orbits a very different star. So, perhaps, instead of an Earth twin, we have discovered an Earth cousin," said NASA Ames Research Scientist Thomas Barclay, of BAERI.
Standing on the surface of Kepler-186f, this is how the view may appear. Credit: Danielle Futselaar
Not to downplay this hype, however. There’s no mistaking it…THIS IS A MAJOR MOMENT IN HUMAN HISTORY.
Astronomers have discovered planets that reside in the Goldilocks or Habitable Zone of solar systems outside of our own. This, however, is the first confirmed find of a planet as close in size (10% larger) to that of Earth.
"This is the best case for a habitable planet yet found. The results are absolutely rock solid. The planet itself may not be [rocky], but I’d bet my house on it. In any case, it’s a gem," Geoff Marcy, Astronomer at the University of California Berkeley told Space.com.
Kepler-186f’s potential for liquid water and perhaps, life, is what make its existence that much more intriguing. [view larger]
"Some people call these habitable planets, which of course we have no idea if they are, we simply know that they are in the habitable zone, and that is the best place to start looking for habitable planets," San Francisco State University astronomer and study co-author Stephen Kane said in a statement to Space.com.
"The four companion planets — Kepler-186b, Kepler-186c, Kepler-186d and Kepler-186e — whiz around their sun every four, seven, 13 and 22 days, respectively, making them too hot for life as we know it. These four inner planets all measure less than 1.5 times the size of Earth," noted in an official statement from NASA.
Geoff Marcy said, "This planet is modestly illuminated by its host star, a red dwarf. This planet basks in an orange-red glow from that star, much [like what] we enjoy at sunset."
Kepler-186f is 1 of 5 planets around its host star, which is a red dwarf, taking 130 days to orbit. As seen in the comparison-worthy artistic rendering above, Kepler-186f and our Earth would share similar views at dawn and dusk.
Whether or not Kepler-186f does contain life, one thing is for certain, there’s a whole lot more space to explore. If Carl were here to share in these continued findings, I believe he’d revert to a self-quoted suggestion from his novel-turned-motion-picture, Contact…
“The universe is a pretty big place. If it is just us, seems like an awful waste of space.”
Stay curious. This is just the beginning.
The find is special because we already know that a planet of this size and in the habitable zone is capable of supporting life as we know it.