Do We Need a Jupiter to Get an Earth?

Sunday June 24th, 2012
11:00 am
Ballroom A

Buy the Panel Discussion DVD


Kevin GrazierKevin R. Grazier - Dr. Grazier was the scientific advisor for "Battlestar Galactica", "Eureka", and "The Event", and co-author of The Science of Battlestar Galactica—a book detailing the science both depicted and hinted at in the re-imagined series. For 15 years he was an Investigation Scientist on the Cassini/Huygens Mission to Saturn and Titan, and for his research performs large-scale long-term computer simulations of early Solar System dynamics and evolution. He is also the science advisor for "Falling Skies", this summer's movie "Gravity", SyFy Channel's upcoming epic series "Defiance," and just produced the sci-fi short "D.N.E.: Do Not Erase." Buy Kevin Grazier's SETIcon II Interview DVD
Rosaly Lopes - Dr. Rosaly M. C. Lopes is a Senior Research Scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. She is an expert on volcanoes on Earth and the planets and has worked on the NASA missions Galileo and Cassini. She has visited more than 50 active volcanoes all over the world and written more than 100 peer-reviewed publications. She enjoys bringing the excitement of her research to the general public via lectures, TV shows and books. Rosaly has obtained numerous awards for her work both in science and outreach. In 2005, she was awarded the Carl Sagan medal by the Division for Planetary Sciences of the American Astronomical Society, in recognition of her success in communicating science to the general public. Buy the SETIcon II Interview DVD
Martin Still - Kepler is NASA's Discovery mission to find Earth-sized, habitable exoplanets. The spacecraft, in an Earth-trailing orbit, yields 165,000 simultaneous light curves of Galactic and extra-Galactic sources over a 108 square degree field in the Cygnus-Lyra direction, with uninterrupted cadences of 1- and 30-minutes over a nominal mission lifetime of 3.5 years. The Kepler Guest Observer Office is tasked with maximizing the quality and depth of Kepler parallel science, exploiting the unique properties of this space-based telecope to impact multiple areas of astrophysics outside the core program of planet transits. Still began his role as Director of the Kepler Guest Observer Office in August 2009. His scientific interests lie in the study of accretion, compact binary stars, black hole physics, gamma-ray bursts and exoplanet detection and characterization.
David Summers - investigates a wide range of chemical reactions that are either needed for life to begin, that may affect whether life can exist, or that might be used by scientists to recognize life elsewhere. For example he is looking at the reactions of nitrogen in the atmosphere of ancient Mars. Where did it go? Could it have provided nitrogen for the start of life on Mars?


Rob French -spends his days at the SETI Institute studying the origin and evolution of the rings and moons of the outer planets.  With graduate degrees in both Astronomy and Computer Science and more than 20 years experience in commercial software development, he is especially interested in ways of automating the analysis of the terabytes of data returned by modern spacecraft.  An avid speaker and educator, Robert never misses an opportunity to share his enthusiasm for space exploration with the general public.