Space is (nearly) All there Is
November 28, 2012
I have always been interested in space since I can remember. I recall a children's book with rocket ships and aliens - I had a strong passion to pioneer the outer limits of human knowledge and experience. But there is one incident that especially stands out in my mind... When I was perhaps 6 years old we made a field trip to the Miami Space Transit Planetarium. I recall looking through a large refracting telescope and saw a star (most likely a planet) in broad daylight! You see, I knew that stars came out at night, but had never considered that stars were in the sky even in the daytime. It was then that I realized that the earth was surrounded by stars constantly - that we are truly immersed by space. This realization dazzled me at the time. Years later I left aerospace engineering to design planetariums around the world. I sometimes wonder to what extent these dome theaters are inspiring other children to pursue a careers in science and engineering, and what wonderful things they will accomplish in the years to come.
An asteroid or comet headed for Earth is the only large-scale natural disaster we can prevent. Working together to fund our Shoemaker NEO Grants for astronomers, we can help save the world.