“Show Me the Planets! NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration”

“Show Me the Planets! NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration”

San Fernando Valley Chapter meeting on December 12

Our galaxy is not nearly as lonely as we once wondered – and we now know this because astronomers have discovered thousands of planets outside of our solar system over the past 25 years. These planets orbiting other stars are called “exoplanets”, and only in the past few years have we learned just how abundant our galactic neighborhood is: on average there is at least one exoplanet for every star in the sky. More profoundly, discoveries by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope reveal that at least one-in-four stars like our Sun harbor a rocky world in the star’s habitable “goldilocks” zone where temperatures may be just right for life (as we know it) to exist. In the past two years exoplanets have been discovered orbiting nearby stars, including the closest star to Earth. Astronomers, and NASA, are now asking with renewed incentive: what are these worlds like? And are there signs of life on these worlds?

Through the Exoplanet Exploration Program, managed by Caltech’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, NASA is developing the technology and designing missions to search for signs of life on words within 100 light-years of the Earth. This ambitious program harnesses the very best talent from our universities, government centers and industry, assembled to answer a question of the ages: are we alone in the universe or members of a greater cosmic community?

Please join us in Sherman Oaks, CA, on Tuesday, December 12, 7:30–9:00am, when Dr. Gary H. Blackwood, Manager, NASA Exoplanet Exploration Program, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology will discuss NASA’s current missions and technology breakthroughs, and how this inspirational quest is already impacting the imagination and interest of the citizens of Earth. Because by exploring a galaxy of worlds we also inspire our own.

The meeting is free for members ($30 for non-members, free for guests for 2 visits). For more information and to register to attend the meeting go to http://adfsfvdec17.eventbrite.com.

Information about joining The A&D Forum is at http://aerospacedefenseforum.org.

The San Fernando Valley chapter of The Aerospace & Defense Forum is sponsored by CohnReznick, City National Bank, and InVista Associates.

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