The race for space began with fear that one of our kind might leave home before the other and gain a military advantage. It was not an expedition but a political decision to fuel the Saturn V rockets that carried our species further than ever before. Four decades later, we have advanced our technology such that each of us carries in our pockets more computational power than all of NASA at the time of the Apollo program, yet we remain grounded, the International Space Station the only reminder of a time when we believed we would inherit the stars.
My generation (the millennials) is a strange lot. We were born into this world of wonderful technological advances and scientific discovery. When I was born, in 1994, the first smart phone was produced and that would forever change the world of technology. I grew up watching Star Wars/Star Trek and was adopted into this sci fi life style and that changed my personal life. All of the technology I was around never really struck me as awesome because it’s all I knew. Watching these sci fi films in a sense, spoiled me with this out of this world technology. That ... more »
My two daughters, my sister and I visited the North Carolina Science Museum on Thanksgiving weekend in 2005. On display were floor-to-ceiling color images of the enigmatic landforms called "Carolina bays". My daughter Lori was actively doing research on stripped bass on several of the lakes that have formed in these gentle depressions, but she had not even heard of the term!
Since that time I have been exploring the possibility that there was some sort of cosmic catastrophic event involved in the bay creation.
One work product has been the creation of a geospatial catalogue of 45,000 Carolina bays using the ... more »
Thanks to the NH Team and the great help from Alan Stern, we had great moments in Paris on the evening of the 15th of July 2015 at our National Science Museum where the Pluto encounter was on live show. I had the great honor to make the full NH mission presentation and I took this opportunity to highlight the important role the Planetary Society had in 2001 for its efficient lobbying at Washington D.C. that led to the re-start of the Pluto mission tender that was cancelled in 2000. I told the audience (this picture) that, without the strong ... more »
When I was a child, attending Valley View Elementary School, in Wadsworth, OH, we were given one of the greatest gifts imaginable. It was the early 90's, and we were energetic little twerps - who grew up into energetic big twerps - but we were visited by a super star. Bill Nye came to our school and wowed us. Not only was he the most famous person in the ENTIRE world to us at the time - the thought of meeting him was overwhelming and exciting - but more than the fame, his influence on us just as great. He ... more »
50 years ago, I had my first opportunity to view our universe through a telescope. I was 9. Since then I've lived an astronomer's life by night, while a systems analyst by day. I've built 2 observatories at 2 locations, to give me the opportunity to image and view our universe from our planet.
I've enjoyed the many years of working within the community, astronomy clubs, and with some professionals on public outreach, data collection and analysis. But most of all, I really enjoy getting out under the sky, checking out newly discovered comets, hunting down Deep Sky Objects (DSO's), especially ... more »
Whenever the sky is clear, I always take out my telescope and look closely at the moon. I observe how it looks and the craters on the moon. Sometimes, I go outside when the sky is clear and stare at the millions of stars in the sky, trying to recognize some constellations and naming them. I do these things because I am in love with space. I enjoy learning about the universe us humans live in.
Here is a life lesson: a person should do things in life that make them happy and that they enjoy doing those things. Like me. ... more »
I just spent the better part of the day reading almost everyone’s entries on "My Story". Some I read the whole article, others, just the bylines, but I got to see who’s out there all across the planet. Young and Old, Novice and Professional, Dreamers and Believers, Pioneers and Adventurers. When I did my first entry, I kinda did more like a resume’ and a recruiting tool rather than a “This is who I Am”. I realized this after reading everyone’s articles. So who am I? Well… I am the luckiest guy in the world. My career has allowed me ... more »
My name is Richard Sample. I am a Quality Control inspector with over 30 years in the testing and inspection industries. I am a degreed Nuclear/Metallurgist, an ASNT nationally certified Level III in Ultrasonic’s, Magnetic Particle, and Liquid Penetrant and an API certified Pressure Vessel (510), Process Piping (570), and Storage Tank (653) Inspector. I have worked in Nuclear power plants, Aerospace, Aircraft, Petrochemical, and Polymer industries, with experience in metal / welding fatigue and failure analysis. I have witnessed a much diversified range of fabrication and processing methods over the decades.
My unique work experience has shown me many approaches ... more »