NASA's 'Destination: Station' brings public talks to CU-Boulder

September 15, 2011 •

The University of Colorado Boulder and NASA will host public talks exploring space science and life aboard the International Space Station on Sept. 20 and 21. These campus events are being held in conjunction with NASA's traveling multimedia exhibit "Destination: Station," which immerses visitors in the story of the space station and includes hands-on activities, imagery and audio and visual technology. The exhibit runs from Sept. 17 through Oct. 28 at the Wings Over the Rockies museum in Denver.

On Wednesday, Sept. 21, during "An Evening with Jim Voss," the former NASA astronaut will talk and answer questions about his space missions, living on the International Space Station and the legacy of the now-retired Space Shuttle. Voss, who is one of two astronauts affiliated as faculty at CU-Boulder, joined the aerospace engineering sciences department following his NASA career, which included five spaceflights, 202 days in space and four spacewalks. The talk, which begins at 7 p.m. at Fiske Planetarium, will include a live conversation with Public Affairs Officer Kelly Humphries inside the International Space Station Mission Control Center at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. Humphries is a 25-year veteran "voice" of mission control for NASA Television. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3.50 for children and seniors. The event is free for CU students with a valid student ID. Advance reservations can be made by contacting Fiske Planetarium at 303-492-5002.

The next day during "Utilization on the International Space Station: Past, Present and Future," Tara M. Ruttley, an associate program scientist for the International Space Station, will give research scientists an insight into the process for placing their experiments aboard the station. The event is free and will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 22, at Fiske Planetarium. Seating is on a first-come, first-seated basis.

"CU-Boulder is a national leader among public universities for research collaborations with NASA," said Matt Benjamin, education programs manager at Fiske Planetarium. "We are excited to provide an opportunity for our research community to sit down and hear firsthand about the process and what kind of research does well on the International Space Station."

Several CU-Boulder programs, including the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, BioServe, Colorado Space Grant Consortium and the CU student group Students for the Exploration and Development of Space will participate in an Expo at the Wings over the Rockies Museum from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sept. 23. The event is open to the public and will include exhibits from many of Colorado's space-related organizations and live talks from NASA personnel.

CU-Boulder is the only institution in the world to have designed and built space instruments that have been launched by NASA to every planet in the solar system and is one of the leading institutions for both solar and lunar science. CU-Boulder scientists have garnered significant observing time on the Hubble Space Telescope since its launch in 1990, and designed a $70 million instrument now riding on Hubble to observe the early history of the universe. The campus has 18 astronaut affiliates, is a national leader among public universities in NASA-funded research, and is involved in a number of both national and international space science partnerships.

The CU campus hosts thousands of lectures, exhibits, performances and sporting events each year. For a full listing of campus events visit www.colorado.edu/events.

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