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John Bluck
Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.
Phone: 650-604-5026
E-mail: jbluck@mail.arc.nasa.gov

July 17, 2007
 
RELEASE : 07_41AR
 
 
NASA Scientists to Discuss Experiments Live From Arctic Crater
 
 
MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. – NASA Ames Research Center will show a live videoconference from a crater in the Canadian Arctic on Friday, July 20, 2007, featuring a panel of NASA researchers conducting experiments there.

NASA research underway in the crater includes using a pair of four-wheeled rovers to learn how robots could help researchers evaluate locations on the moon as potential sites for lunar bases. NASA is planning to send astronauts back to the moon by 2020. Prior to establishing a lunar outpost, NASA must survey many locations to produce maps, look for minerals and water and learn other details about the sites, scientists say.

The robots, "K10 Black" and "K10 Red," carry 3-D laser scanners and ground-penetrating radar. The robots began operating in Haughton Crater, Devon Island, Canada, this month and will continue working until July 31. Another of many experiments includes a stranded-astronaut lunar simulation test to examine the physiological effects if someone has to hike back to a lunar base following an equipment breakdown.

WHAT: A live satellite videoconferencing opportunity to question NASA scientists conducting research in Haughton Crater, Devon Island, Canada. Reporters also may interview NASA engineers in the NASA Ames Exploration Center.

WHEN: The media opportunity to question scientists and engineers from Ames will take place 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. PDT July 20, 2007.

WHO: A four-member panel in the Arctic will include: S. Pete Worden, director of NASA Ames, who will discuss lunar exploration; Chris McKay, a planetary scientist at NASA Ames who will discuss the value of analog site testing; Matt Deans, field director of the Haughton Crater K10 Robot Site Survey who will describe the robots and the survey; and Pascal Lee, a scientist from the SETI Institute, Mountain View, Calif., principal investigator of the Haughton Mars Project.

In addition, Ames' Maria Bualat, an engineer with the Intelligent Robotics Group, will make a short presentation in Ames' Exploration Center about robotics and will be available for interviews.

WHERE: The NASA Exploration Center, located near the NASA Ames main gate at Moffett Field. To reach Ames, take U.S. Highway 101 to the Moffett Field, NASA Parkway exit and drive east on Moffett Blvd. towards the main gate and bear right into the parking lot. The Exploration Center is located in the large white dome.

For more information about the simulated Lunar Robotic Site Survey, please visit:

http://haughton2007.arc.nasa.gov

 

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