Sunday June 24th, 2012
Debra Ann Fischer- Debra Fischer is a professor of Astronomy at Yale University. Her research is centered on the detection and characterization of planets orbiting other stars. Since 1997, she has participated in the discovery of more than 150 planets, working with colleagues Geoff Marcy (UC Berkeley), Paul Butler (Carnegie Institution) and Steve Vogt (UCSC). Working with colleague Jeff Valenti (Space Telescope Science Institute) she has modeled spectra of stars on planet search programs at Lick Observatory, Keck Observatory, the Anglo-Australian Observatory, demonstrating a strong correlation between the chemical composition of stars and the presence of gas giant planets. Buy Debra Ann Fischer's SETIcon II Interview DVD
Jon Richards - works on the Allen Telescope Array (ATA) software and hardware control systems. This involves maintaining and improving the software that operates the 42 - 6 meter receiving dishes, maintaining and developing electronic controls, and developing/improving the software that analyzes the received data for signals. Jon is also working on the SETILive project, tying the data gathering and analysis system at the ATA to the cloud infrastructure.
Alex Hall - now the Senior Director of the $30 million Google Lunar X PRIZE, a private race to the moon designed to enable commercial exploration of space while engaging the global public, Hall brings a wealth of experience in both the private and public sectors in USA and Europe to the X PRIZE Foundation. As the co-founder and former CEO of Airship Ventures, a company that uses airships for passenger flights, science research and media purposes, Hall is credited with breaking new ground in aviation by bringing Zeppelin airships back to the U.S. after 70 years. Prior to her position at Airship Ventures, Hall served as the Executive Director of the Chabot Space & Science Center in Oakland, CA, where she managed fundraising efforts, developed exhibitions and led major programs with school district, university and agency partners. Hall has a degree in Astrophysics from the University of Leicester in United Kingdom and is regarded as a leader in bringing space and astronomy to the public, having authored several books for children and adults about space and hosted BBC Television's "Final Frontier."
Dan Werthimer - is co-founder and chief scientist of the SETI@home project and directs other UC Berkeley SETI searches at radio, infrared and visible wavelengths, including the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Radio Emissions from Nearby Developed Intelligent Populations (SERENDIP). He is also the principal investigator for the worldwide Collaboration for Astronomy Signal Processing and Electronics Research (CASPER). Werthimer has taught courses at universities in Peru, Egypt, Ghana, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, Uganda and Kenya. He has published numerous papers in the fields of SETI, radio astronomy, instrumentation and science education; he is co-author of "SETI 2020" and editor of "Astronomical and Biochemical Origins and the Search for Life in the Universe".
Ariel Waldman - Ariel Waldman is the founder of Spacehack.org, a directory of ways to participate in space exploration, and the global coordinator of Science Hack Day, an event that brings together scientists, technologists, designers and people with good ideas to see what they can create in one weekend. She also is an interaction designer and Research Affiliate at Institute For The Future. Previously, she worked at NASA's CoLab program whose mission was to connect communities inside and outside NASA to collaborate. Her website is at http://arielwaldman.com.