When I was in High School in Missoula Montana, I constructed 2 reflecting telescopes. The first was a six-inch then I ground a 10 inch. The larger one was long-focus (9.3) and great on planetary and lunar work. I eventually entered my 10-inch along with studies on Lunar Surfaces (Craters and Mountains) in the Montana Science Fair and won 3rd in Astronomy and Light. After moving to Kansas, I continued to observe and draw planets and lunar features.
It was destiny that I would be born the same year on September 27th, two months later after NASA’s historic Apollo eleven‘s moon landing on July 20th, 1967. My love of science and space would become a part of my life. I wanted to one day reach beyond the safety of our blue world and see with my own eyes the wonders of our local address in the vastness of what we know of our universe. Life changes and as I became older I had to make this passion secondary to the reality of this world were realistically not just ... more »
This picture is a sketch of the Andromeda galaxy that I completed as part of a high school presentation on finding and sketching deep sky objects in a telescope.
I've been an avid amateur astronomer ever since my dad bought me a small telescope when I was young. I remember trying to discern Saturn's rings for the first time and driving to local state parks to escape the city lights. With time we upgraded equipment and became more skilled in the art of observing. We traveled to star parties and spent nights out in sub-zero temperatures just to get that perfect ... more »
I fell in love with space at the age of five when I met the first female astronaut at a place called Moody Gardens in Galveston TX. I remember shaking her hand and thinking she was the most interesting and wonderful person ever and I found inspiration knowing that girls could love space too. Galveston doesn't look the same anymore ever since the hurricane and I havn't been there for years but, in my memories it was a very beautiful place.
After that moment I would also visit my grandfather in central Florida and watch the shuttle launches of Discovery, Endeavor, ... more »
I was born in 1960 in southern Ontario Canada and one of the first things that I read and interested me were children's books about space exploration and astronomy. I was attracted to the vastness, majesty and nobility of the heavens and the many secrets to find out about them. What really solidified my interest in astronomy and space exploration was the lead up and successful accomplishment of the human lunar landings by NASA in July 1969 and then a couple more times until 1972. One thing I particularly liked then and still long for more of now was to ... more »
Young boy I liked night walk with my grandpa. I asked him many, many questions about the sky, the stars, the universe ...
And one night, it's the moon landing, this July 21. All the family is around the radio (my parents haven't TV). I remember, I was afraid that lunar ground would be as unstable as quicksands!
Space is everywhere for me: in astronomy club during high school, in TV shows like Cosmos, in the subject of my thesis at the end of my studies, about the modification of the orofacial biology during weightlessness (I was then in connection with a ... more »
As a child I heard talk about Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walking on the Moon and saw the first Viking Lander image of the surface of Mars. These things looked totally amazing and unobtainable from my small Michigan farming town. Then, as a young adult I read many works from Isaac Asimov and Carl Sagan and I became more interested. So I went to college to learn about space and rocketry and I joined The Planetary Society. Today, I am a member of The Planetary Society and the Tacoma Astronomical Society. Tonight the Tacoma Astronomical Society hosts a free ... more »
I am a postdoc at Los Alamos National Lab and I study the sky that our eyes can't see--the gamma-ray sky. These are the highest energy photons known and come from some of the coolest most extreme cosmic processes. I work with the High Altitude Water Cherenkov (HAWC) Telescope, which doesn't look like a conventional telescope. But this is what you need to "see" gamma rays.
When I was a young boy in the 1960s, my mother and I visited with a good friend of hers. Her friend's son was watching Star Trek, so I sat next to him and what I saw I thought was so cool. It was the episode where Captain Kirk was on this planet with a Lizard like creature named the Gorn. They had to battle each other to the death. Another influence was the landing on the Moon in 1969. I watched it on a black and white TV. These two incidents in my young age influenced me, and ever ... more »
In the interests of full disclosure, I am one of Mat Kaplan's brothers. So I may be a bit biased when I say, "Planetary Radio is the greatest thing to happen to radio since the invention of the transistor." I'd like to apologize to my big Bro for, when young and innocent, disassembling various items of his personal property. Fortunately his telescope remained intact, and through it I first gazed upon the Moon and Saturn in awe.
At about age five I was introduced to humankind in space with a record album my parent's gave me. My two favorite songs were ... more »