This Week on The Space Show

David Livingston will have the following guests on The Space Show this week:

  • Dr. Christopher P. McKay, planetary scientist, NASA Ames
  • Marsha Freeman, author of “Krafft Ehricke’s Extraterrestrial Imperative”
  • Roger Lenard, president of Heliosat, Inc.
  • Robert Zimmerman, space historian and author
  • Dr. Mike Gruntman, Professor of Astronautics in the Dept. of Astronautics at USC
  • Dr. Mike Gruntman, professor of astronautics at the University of Southern California (USC).
  • Karsan McGillicuddy, General Manager of the Space Aliens Grill and Bar in Grand Forks

A full description, with dates and times, is below.

1. Monday, April 20, 2009, 2-3:30 PM PDT (21-23:30 GMT)
Dr. Christopher P. McKay
is a Planetary Scientist with the Space Science Division of NASA Ames. Chris received his Ph.D. in Astro Geophysics from the University of Colorado in 1982 and has been a research scientist with the NASA Ames Research Center since that time. His current research focuses on the evolution of the solar system and the origin of life. He is also actively involved in planning for future Mars missions including human settlements. Chris been involved in research in Mars-like environments on Earth, traveling to the Antarctic dry valleys, Siberian, the Canadian Arctic, and the Atacama desert in Chile to study life in these Mars-like environments. Dr. McKay will be talking about our Mars program and recent research findings relative to Mars.


2. Tuesday, April 21, 2009, 7-8:30 PM PDT (April 22, 2-3:30 GMT)
Marsha Freeman
is the author of a new Apogee book, “Krafft Ehricke’s Extraterrestrial Imperative.” Marsha Freeman was born in New York City. and was educated at Queens College and Columbia University. She is the author of hundreds of articles on the U.S. space program and has been published in Fusion Magazine, Executive Intelligence Review, 21st Century Science & Technology, Acta Astronautica, Space World, New Federalist newspaper, Science Books & Films, Space Governance Journal, The World & I, Quest, The Encyclopedia of the Midwest, and many other periodicals. In 1993 she authored the acclaimed book “How We Got to the Moon: The Story of the German Space Pioneers” and then in 2000 she authored “Challenges of Human Space Exploration.” She has been a witness before the United States Congress at hearings on science, energy, space, and transportation budgets and policies. Marsha has been an invited speaker at conferences and symposia on energy, space, and technology topics; a guest lecturer at New York University; an invited speaker by the AIAA and NASA Ames Research Center; and presenter at International Astronautical Federation Congresses.


3. Wednesday, April 22, 2009, 2-3:30 PM PDT (21-23:30 GMT)
Roger Lenard
, President of Heliosat, Inc. comes to the show to discuss their unique space solar power concept. Note that this program will archive on Monday as there is no live Monday show due to my being at the Responsive Space Conference. When you see it on the archives on Monday, its ready for play and podcasts. Roger Lenard is a retired Air Force officer who holds a Bachelor of Science in physics and a Master of Science in chemical physics. Roger has 2000 hours of single seat fighter time in the Air Force. During his flying career he was a squadron test pilot and an air combat tactics instructor pilot. Roger spent several years in the space object tracking and identification program where he developed the first automatic pattern recognition programs for the Air Force. Roger was selected as part of President Reagan’s Defense Technology Study Team where he designed the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization’s Kinetic Energy Weapons Master Plan. Roger was transferred to the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization where he was in charge of lightweight interceptors, hypervelocity weapons and was the program manager for the Timberwind program, a project to develop a nuclear thermal rocket stage. Roger managed programs of $100M/year in high technology research and development. Roger has served on four Defense Science Boards on subjects from advanced launch systems to space based radars. One of the products of his programs was the lightweight interceptor package for what is now the Navy Upper Tier defense system. In 1991 Roger was selected to be part of President Bush’s Space Exploration Initiative, working for General Thomas Stafford. He was the Mars exploration team co-lead with Mr. Douglas Cook of NASA Johnson Space Center. In 1993 Roger retired from the Air Force and began working for Sandia National Laboratories. In 2000 Roger became a part-time Sandian and began to consult for the Air Force and NASA on the X-37 and hydrogen peroxide fueled upper stage. He is a part-time Principal Member of the Technical Staff at Sandia National Laboratories in the advanced reactor technology department. He is a consultant to Raytheon Missile Systems on the NASA Concept Evaluation and Refinement effort and provides technical and programmatic advice to Marshall Space Flight Center on the surface nuclear power and nuclear thermal propulsion programs. Roger worked extensively on the Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter program for the Northrop Grumman team, who won the JIMO contract. Roger has authored numerous papers and holds several patents and has many documented technical advances to his credit. He is a full academician with the International Astronautical Academy.


4. Thursday, April 23, 2009, 9:30-11:30 AM PDT (16:30-18:30 GMT)
Robert Zimmerman
is a well known and respected space historian and author. He also wrote a weekly UPI column which can be found by doing a Google for “Zimmerman bibliography” and click on “A Zimmerman Bibliography”. Mr. Zimmerman is also an award winning author. His new book is now out, “THE UNIVERSE IN A MIRROR: THE SAGA OF THE HUBBLE SPACE TELESCOPE AND THE VISIONARIES WHO BUILT IT” is published by Princeton University Press. The book tells the poignant tale of the men and women behind the telescope, and how many had to sacrifice careers and family to get it built. It also describes in detail the importance of Hubble both scientifically and culturally. More than any other instrument sent into space, the Hubble Space Telescope reshaped the human perception of our place in the universe. Robert’s book “LEAVING EARTH: Space Stations, Rival Superpower, and the Quest for Interplanetary Travel” is a must read! His work is published regularly in such magazines as ASTRONOMY, THE SCIENCES, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, INVENTION & TECHNOLOGY, FORTUNE, AD ASTRA, AMERICAN HISTORY, STARDATE, and many other major magazines. In 2000 he was co-winner of the David N. Schramm Award, given by the High Energy Astrophysics Division of the American Astronomical Society for Science Journalism. Before writing his newest book, LEAVING EARTH, Mr. Zimmerman authored two books, GENESIS, THE STORY OF APOLLO 8, published by Four Walls Eight Windows in 1998, describes the family and political tale behind the first human journey to another world and THE CHRONOLOGICAL ENCYCLOPEDIA OF DISCOVERIES IN SPACE (published by Oryx Press, now Greenword Publishing Group 2000). This is a detailed reference book describing what was accomplished on every space mission beginning in October 1957 with Sputnik and continuing through December 1999. Mr. Zimmerman also won an Emmy Award for the best space history for the general public by the American Astronautical Society awarded on Nov. 16, 2004.

5. Sunday, April 26, 2009
Show is recorded and ready for listening and podcasting when you see it on the website. The first hour features Dr. Mike Gruntman, Professor of Astronautics in the Dept. of Astronautics at USC. What you will hear is Dr. Gruntman’s talk on the history of rockets which he gave to UND Space Studies faculty and students at his recent colloquium at Space Studies in Grand Forks. Special thanks to Dr. Gruntman and Dr. David Whalen, Department Chair of Space Studies for granting permission to The Space Show to archive this terrific talk. Immediately following Dr. Gruntman’s talk there will be a short pause and then you will hear an interview I did in Grand Forks with Karsan McGillicuddy, General Manager of the Space Aliens Grill and Bar in Grand Forks. This is a fabulous space and alien theme restaurant in Grand Forks, a perfect place to visit if you are involved with Space Studies or UND or for any other reason. This is a fun discussion about the Space Aliens Grand Forks grill, including the space theme art and more. Karsan is a UND graduate though not from the Space Studies Department.

Regarding Dr. Mike Gruntman, he is a professor of astronautics at the Viterbi School of Engineering of the University of Southern California (USC). In August 2004, he was appointed the first (founding) Chair of the new academic unit in the USC Viterbi School of Engineering, the Astronautics and Space Technology Division, for 2004-2007. The life journey took Mike from a child growing at the Tyuratam launch base in the late 1950s and early 1960s to a physicist working in the USSR Academy of Sciences to the founding director of a major educational program in space engineering in the heart of the American space industry. Mike received his Ph.D. from the Space Research Institute (IKI) of the USSR Academy of Sciences in 1984. In 1980s, Mike pioneered various instrumental techniques for imaging of space plasmas in energetic neutral atoms (ENA). ENA imaging had matured by mid-1990s, with several ENA experiments already launched (IMAGE, Cassini) or being in preparation (TWINS, IBEX). In 1990, Mike succeeded in escaping from the socialist paradise of the Soviet Union and reached California. He is professor of astronautics and professor of aerospace engineering at USC since 1993. Presently, he is Principal Investigator and Co-Investigator in several theoretical and experimental programs funded by NASA; he participate s in space missions TWINS (Co-I), IBEX (Co-I). His interests include astronautics, space mission and spacecraft design, microsatellite technologies, spacecraft propulsion, space instrumentation and sensors, solar system galactic frontier, heliospheric and magnetospheric physics, space plasmas and environment, particle and photon analyzers and detector systems, aerospace education, and aerospace history. He teaches courses in space science and technology; his graduate course on spacecraft design is perhaps the largest in the country (100+ graduate students in spring 2007). Mike authored and co-authored more than 200 scientific and technical publications. In 2004, AIAA published his 500-page book – “Blazing the Trail” – on the early history of spacecraft and rocketry. (The book web site is at https://astronauticsnow.com/blazingthetrail/ .) The book received the Luigi Napolitano Award from the International Academy of Astronautics in 2006. The book recently went into second printing and the publisher (AIAA) reduced the list price by one third. A few weeks ago Mike published his second book, “From Astronautics to Cosmonautics,” on the history of the words of science ‘astronautics’ and ‘cosmonautics’ and the stories of two early space pioneers, Robert Esnault-Pelterie and Ary Sternfeld, who introduced those words. The book is available at Amazon and its web site is https://astronauticsnow.com/astrocosmo/ .

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