Last year the American Geophysical Union (AGU) put out an open call for entries to its "Younger Scientists Video Profiles" project, so I applied. The main purpose of the project was to attract kids to geoscience careers and to give the public a better understanding of what AGU member scientists do.  My tsunami work and astronaut ambitions gained their attention, so AGU representatives interviewed me on camera at the Exploratorium in San Francisco during last December's AGU Fall Meeting. Later, they featured me in a blog post about the Chile tsunami too.  At long last, now my video profile has been posted on the AGUvideos YouTube channel. It features footage taken both in San Francisco and on my FMARS mission. Check it out:

You can see still photos from all of the Younger Scientists who participated in this project on the AGU Facebook page and Flickr Photostream. Special thanks to MJ for making this happen.

This is for all of you Mars lovers out there.

The Symphony of Science has released a video titled "The Case for Mars". It puts to music many of the memorable speeches made by Robert Zubrin, Carl Sagan, Brian Cox, and Penelope Boston on the topic of Mars exploration.

Footage used in the video comes from Sagan's Cosmos series, The Mars Underground documentary, and the BBC's Wonders of the Solar System documentary. The inspirational, melodic video also features footage of people conducting EVAs at the Mars Desert Research Station, which is accepting applications now. Throughout the video, Zubrin is heard saying, "It shouldn't be humans to Mars in 50 years. It should be humans to Mars in 10." I can't say I disagree.

The Symphony of Science is a musical project designed to deliver scientific knowledge and philosophy in musical form. You can see the rest of their videos here.


June 7, 2010

Astronauts4Hire expands its team of Commercial Astronaut Candidates

Astronauts4Hire announced today that it has selected six new members, bringing the total number of commercial astronaut candidates in the organization to seventeen. The new Astronauts4Hire recruits bring a great depth of experience to the initiative to develop a pool of qualified commercial astronauts. Many of them are private pilots with a long resume of experience working in the aerospace industry and have extensive experience working in microgravity aboard parabolic flights. One new member is a professional triathlete and author of several books on the topic of astronaut training.

The new Astronauts4Hire are:
Astronauts4Hire is a Florida non-profit organization whose mission is to increase the competitiveness of commercial astronaut candidates by providing skills training, facilitating forums for candidate communication, engaging with potential employers, and inspiring the next generation. The organization is in the process of developing a pool of highly qualified and well-trained commercial astronauts to serve the emerging suborbital, and eventually orbital science industry.

For more information about Astronauts4Hire, its initial astronaut candidates, and sponsorship opportunities, please visit:


Interested parties can download and distribute the press release as a MS Word or Adobe PDF document.

What is gravity like on the Mars compared to the Moon or an asteroid? See for yourself in this really cool video made by Astronaut Chris Hadfield and crewmates on the NEEMO-14 mission at the NOAA Aquarius Reef Base. If you're curious to learn more about the underwater habitat, check out the NEEMO-14 overview video and video tour of Aquarius too.

For more great information on the NEEMO-14 mission, check out their Flickr photos, YouTube videos, Twitter profile, Facebook page, and mission support blog.

Stay turned for a future post with more on aquanaut opportunities!

With conventional propulsion technologies, the trip from Earth to Mars will take about 6-8 months, depending on the trajectory and mission plan chosen.  That means a round trip visit to the Red Planet will take at least a year and a half.   How will people cope with the psychological factors on such a long journey?  This is the central question asked by the Mars500 Medical Project, which began today.

Six dedicated people locked themselves in a Moscow hangar, committing themselves to a 520-day isolation study to simulate a mission to Mars.  The experiment builds upon 14- and 105-day studies that were carried out in 2007 and 2009, respectively.  The program is run the Russia's Institute for Biomedical Problems (IBMP), which has a long history of conducting experiments supporting human spaceflight.  The BBC had two really nice articles this week on the Mars500 project here and here.  You can learn about Mars500 in the following video:

Mars500 Resources on the Web:

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