May 9-15, 2011 / Vol 30, No 19 / Hawai`i Island, USA

TEDx NY Explores Mysteries of Jupiter

Scott Bolton (TL), Chief Scientist for the NASA Juno mission, is the headline speaker of the May 9 TEDx event in New York City. Bolton’s talk is entitled ‘Piercing the Veil’ as he will elaborate on how Juno will probe the atmosphere of Jupiter in search of clues to how the largest planet in the Solar System and the Solar System itself were formed from a primordial cloud of gas. The Jupiter system contains more than 75% of the planetary mass of the Solar System. By determining the amount of water is in the planet, the 2011 mission will complete the inventory of the key ingredients that make up the planet. Photographer, writer and filmmaker Michael Benson (BR) will speak about his artistic efforts to reproduce the heavens and the spheres. The event will also feature a video about Jeff Greason of XCOR Aerospace, a video that explores the giant telescopes and detectors at some of the most remote places on Earth, and opportunities for networking and discussion with speakers and audience. (Credit: TEDx, NASA)

2nd IAA Planetary Defense Conference to Focus on Action, International Efforts

The International Academy of Astronautics will hold its 2nd Planetary Defense Conference (PDC) in Bucharest, Romania, on May 9-12. Several hundred space scientists and researchers from all over the world will focus on this year’s theme, ‘From Threat to Action’ by discussing the threat posed by Near Earth Objects (NEO) and then outlining steps to protect Earth from asteroid and comet impacts. Participants will draft proposals to advance monitoring and warning networks, current technologies and techniques for deflecting NEO, disaster management and response as well as international cooperation and coordination. The keynote address will be given by scientist / author Anders Sandberg (CR) and feature talks by EPOXI (TL) Program Executive Lindley Johnson on ‘US / NASA NEO Program Status and Plans,’ Richard Wainscoat (C) on ‘The Pan-STARRS (CL) Search for Near Earth Asteroids – Present Status and Future Plans,’ as well as over 60 poster presentations. On May 13, ESA will host a Small Bodies Missions Workshop for the international NEO community to discuss the synergies between science, exploration and planetary defense. (Credit: NASA, IAA, ESA,,

= All times for terrestrial events in local time unless noted.

= All times for international terrestrial events in local time unless noted.

= All times for space events, and…

= All times for international space / astro events in Hawaii Standard Time unless noted. Add 10 hours to obtain UT (‘Universal Time;’ Greenwich, England).

Weekly Planet Watch – Morning Planets: Mercury (E), Venus (E), Mars (E), Jupiter (E) / Evening Planets: Saturn (SE).


May 9 — International Space Station, LEO: E-27 crew members continue with scientific experiments and maintenance activities while preparing for the arrival of Endeavour STS-134.

May 9 — NASA Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO), Lunar Orbit: All systems nominal in scientific phase of mission as LRO continues to make digital elevation and terrain maps that will be a fundamental reference for future human exploration.

May 9 — Mars Rovers Opportunity & Spirit, Red Planet: NASA Opportunity rover continues trek towards Endeavour Crater as Spirit remains silent at Troy.

May 9-11 — NASTAR Center, Philadelphia PA:NASTAR Suborbital Scientist Training Program,’ provides researchers, professors and graduate students with hands-on space flight physiology training to prepare them to design experiments and perform research aboard commercial suborbital space flights.

May 9-11 — The National Academies, The National Research Council, Washington DC:NASA Technology Roadmap: Propulsion and Power Panel.’

May 9-11 — Streamline Marketing Communications, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: ‘3rd Global Space and Satellite Forum.’

May 9-12 — International Academy of Astronautics, Bucharest, Romania: ‘2nd Planetary Defense Conference 2011: From Threat to Action.’

May 9-12 — ESA, Brugge, Belgium: ‘7th Aerothermodynamics Symposium,’ event to focus on Europe’s new vehicles and missions, either experimental or operational, under development providing new technological challenges and outcomes for the aerothermodynamic community.

May 9-12 — Langley Research Center, Hampton VA:2011 NASA Engineering Workshop.’

May 9-12 — American Geophysical Union, Charleston SC:AGU Chapman Conference on Modeling the Ionosphere / Thermosphere System.’

May 9-13 — Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research, Teistungen, Germany: ‘4th SOLAIRE Network Meeting: Magnetic Field Emergence, Linkage and Eruption in the Solar Atmosphere.’

May 9Moon: 4.9° SSW of Beehive Cluster; 13:00.

May 9Epsilon Arietid Meteors: This meteor shower occurs during the daytime and radiates from the constellation Aries.

Continued from . . .

May 8 — SmarterShows, Los Angeles CA:Spacecraft Technology Expo 2012: Design, Build, Test;’ through May 10.

May 8 — National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Iowa City IA:Midwest ALMA Workshop 2011;’ through May 10.


May 10 — TED Conferences, New York City NY:TEDxMidTownNY: Piercing the Veil – Can Jupiter’s Secrets Reveal the Origins of Water and Life on Earth,’ Scott Bolton.

May 10 — NASA Headquarters, Washington DC: STS-133 crew to give a presentation about their 13-day mission on board the International Space Station at 11:00 EDT.

May 10 — City of Houston, Houston TX: NASA astronaut Shannon Walker to stop by the open session of the city council hearing to present Mayor Annise Parker and 14 council members with a City of Houston flag she carried with her in space at 14:00 CDT.

May 10-11 — The National Academies, Washington DC:NASA Technology Roadmap Meeting: Instruments and Computing Panel.’

May 10Moon: At First Quarter; 10:32.


May 11 — Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston TX:LPI Seminar Series: What Are We Missing in Meteoritics? From Chondritic Cannibalism to Water on Mars,’ AW Needham.

May 11 — Intech Science Center and Planetarium, Winchester, United Kingdom: ‘Songs of the Stars,’ Donald Kurtz.

May 11 — Cassini OTM-284, Saturn Orbit: Spacecraft conducts Orbital Trim Maneuver #284 today.

May 11Venus: 0.57° SSE of Jupiter; 06:00.

May 11Mercury: 2.1° SSE of Jupiter; 10:00.

May 11Moon: 5.2° SSW of Regulus; 04:00.

May 11Asteroid 2006 DO62: Near-Earth Flyby (0.024 AU).


May 12 — The SETI Institute, Mountain View CA: Colloquium Series Lecture: ‘Planetary Observations with the James Webb Space Telescope,’ Heidi Hammel.

May 12 — Lunar and Planetary Institute, Houston TX:LPI Seminar Series: Silicate Stardust in Primitive Chondrites,’ Maitrayee Bose.

May 12-13 — Ames Research Center, Mountain View CA: ‘NASA Forward Maker Camp: 7.1 Ames Camp.’

May 12-13 — NASA Astrobiology Institute, San Diego CA: ‘Paleobiology During the Genomics Era.’

May 12-13 — European Commission – Enterprise and Industry, Budapest, Hungary: ‘FP7 Space Conference 2011: Lets Embrace Space.’

May 12-14 — University of California Irvine – Center for Cosmology, Irvine CA: ‘Workshop: Unveiling the FAR-IR and Sub-mm Extragalactic Universe – Herschel, ALMA, CCAT, SPICA, and Beyond.’

May 12Asteroid 2011 HC24: Near-Earth Flyby (0.015 AU).


May 13 — Lunar and Planetary Institute, Fairbanks AK: Indication of Interest form due for the ‘5th International Conference on Mars Polar Science and Exploration.’

May 13 — ESA, International Academy of Astronautics, Bucharest, Romania: ‘Small Bodies Missions Workshops.’

May 13 — Astronomical Society of Australia, Sydney, Australia: ‘Women in Astronomy 2011 Workshop.’

May 13-15 — Spaceport America, Follow the Sun Tour Company, Las Cruces NM: ‘Spaceport America Preview Tours,’ to be offered every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

May 13-15 — Tom Wood Automotive Group, NASA, Greenfield IN: ‘15th Annual Indianapolis Air Show,’ featuring Glenn Research Center’s ‘Journey to Tomorrow‘ traveling exhibit.


May 14 — International Lunar Observatory Association, Space Age Publishing Company, Shanghai, China: ‘Galaxy Forum China 2011: Galaxy Education in the 21st Century.’

May 14 — Zero Gravity Corporation, San Francisco CA: Commercial weightless flight on board G-Force One.

May 14 — Aerospace Industries Association, National Association of Rocketry, Washington DC:Team America Rocketry Challenge 2011.’

May 14 — Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt MD: Explore @ NASA Goddard.’

May 14 — Sally Ride Science, San Diego CA: Sally Ride Science Festival,’ event to encourage 5th-8th grade girls in science and feature presentation by astronaut Wendy Lawrence.

May 14-15 —Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena CA: JPL Open House,’ celebrates JPL’s accomplishments with exhibits and demonstrations about the Laboratory’s ongoing research and space exploration.

May 14Moon: 7.6° SSW of Saturn, 00:00; 2.7° SW of Spica, 19:00.


May 15-16 — Florida Atlantic University Dept. of Physics , Boca Raton FL: 6th Gulf Coast Gravity Meeting.’

May 15-17 — The National Academies, Irvine CA: NASA Technology Roadmap Meeting: Materials Panel.’

May 15-19 — The SOAR Telescope, Brazil Ministry of Science and Technology, et al, Maresias Beach, Brazil: 1st International Symposium of Science with the SOAR Telescope.’

May 15Moon: At Perigee (Distance 56.78 Earth-Radii); 01:00.

May 15Comet / 2010 G2 Hill: 1.4° from North Celestial Pole; 03:00.