Saturday June 23rd, 2012
Alan Stern - a planetary scientist, space program executive, aerospace consultant, and author. For the last three years, he’s been an Associate Vice President at the Southwest Research Institute, and since 2008 has had his own aerospace consulting practice. Alan was also recently appointed as Director of the Florida Space Institute. In 2007 and 2008, Alan served as NASA’s chief of all space and Earth science programs, directing a $4.4 billion organization with 93 separate flight missions and a program of over 3,000 research grants. He is currently training to fly a series of suborbital space research missions with Virgin Galactic and XCOR Aerospace in 2012-2013, and serves as the Chief Scientist and Mission Architect for the Moon Express Google Lunar X-Prize.
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."
Bob Richards - is a space entrepreneur and futurist. He is a Co-Founder of the International Space University, Singularity University, SEDS, the Space Generation Foundation and Google Lunar X PRIZE competitors Odyssey Moon Ltd. and Moon Express, Inc., where he currently serves as CEO. As Director of the Optech Space Division from 2002-2009, Bob led the company's technology into orbit in 2004 and to the surface of Mars in 2007 aboard the NASA Phoenix Lander, making the first discovery of falling Martian snow. Bob studied aerospace and industrial engineering at Ryerson University; physics and astronomy at the University of Toronto; and space science at Cornell University where he became special assistant to Carl Sagan. Bob is an evangelist of the "NewSpace" movement and has been a catalyst for a number of commercial space ventures. Buy Bob Richards' SETIcon II Interview DVD
Darlene S. Lim- research interests span both the Earth and Space Sciences. While her background is in Geobiology, Darlene has been parlaying her field research into helping the space exploration community develop the tools and operations concepts needed for humans to conduct science in the hostile environment of space. For the past 8 years, Darlene has been the Principal Investigator of the Pavilion Lake Research Project, which is a multi-disciplinary program anchored in both science and exploration research. She is also the Science Lead for the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations (NEEMO) program, which is conducting science and operations research into understanding how to explore Near Earth Asteroids. Darlene is a DeepWorker submersible pilot, which she has been using to explore both lakes and marine environments.
Adrian Brown - a planetary scientist at the SETI Institute who analyses spectroscopic data gathered by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. For example, he’s interested in finding subtle hints that large bodies of water might once have flooded the northern regions of this now-dry world, hints that the Orbiter’s spectroscope could provide. In addition to his search for water, he also hunts for clues to volcanic activity in these same northern realms, because the energy provided by such eruptions could fuel microscopic life. A native of Australia, Adrian has spent a lot of time walking the rugged outback of the western part of that continent, learning how minerals in dry environments can be the fingerprints of water. That expertise helps him search for clues to Mars’ hydraulic past, when not just water, but alien life might have decked the landscape.