It’s a New Moon 40 Years After Apollo: Asking What Was Once Unthinkable

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Come out and Support NASA’s Gerald Soffen Lecture Series for a special Apollo 17 Anniversary Event. The Gerald Soffen Lecture Series is our monthly program for showcasing the great work done here at the Goddard Space Flight Center. Each month features different speakers tackling a variety of topics, from Earth Science to Engineering (and everything in between!).


Wednesday, December 12: Dr. Noah Petro

It’s a New Moon 40 Years After Apollo: Asking What Was Once Unthinkable


Presentation By: Dr. Noah Petro

 Between 1969 and 1972, six Apollo missions sent humans to the surface of the Moon. Now, 40 years after the last Apollo mission explored the Moon, we are beginning to better understand the entire Moon, including the six Apollo sites, and how its surface evolved to its current state. Within the last 5 years we have learned the Moon is wetter, colder, more active, and more diverse than we previously knew. These discoveries are changing how we view the Moon, how we think it formed, and how it evolved. Using data from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter we now see the Moon in a new light and can ask questions that, even 10 years ago, were unthinkable.


Dr. Noah Petro is a research scientist and is part of the Project Science team for the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) mission. Dr. Petro has been working at NASA Goddard for 5 years, coming here after earning a Ph.D. from Brown University in Geological Sciences. During the Apollo program his father helped build parts for the lunar lander and the astronauts' backpacks, now he helps run the LRO mission that has imaged the landing sites and re-sparked interest in the past and future exploration of the Moon. In addition to studying the Moon, he is interested in the geology of small bodies in the solar system and what their surfaces can tell us about the evolution of the solar system.


During his 30-year NASA career, Dr. Gerald Soffen (1926-2000) led the science team for NASA's Viking program, was Director of Life Sciences at NASA Headquarters, Project scientist for NASA's Earth Observing System, and created NASA Academy, NASA's premiere leadership training internship. The Viking 2 lander was posthumously named after Dr. Soffen and a crater on Mars was named "Soffen." He was best known, however, for his passion for inspiring the next generation of scientists and engineers.

 Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the lecture will start promptly at 7 p.m. Space is limited. Advance registration is strongly encouraged. Visitors are still welcome to attend without pre-registration. Please note that attendees who have submitted pre-registration forms will have priority for seating, and that overflow seating may be required to accommodate all guests.


A New Moon -- Special Apollo 17 Anniversary Event!:

When: December 12, 2012

Time: 07:00:PM - 08:30:PM

Where: Auditorium & Science Center/Sphere

Address: 8800 Greenbelt Rd., Greenbelt, Md., 20771


(Registration deadline December 07, 2012) - Register Now http://visitorcenterevents.gsfc.nasa.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=event.viewEventDetails&event_id=26




 Previous lectures are available for viewing online at



 If you are looking to schedule a visit or for general information about the Visitor Center, please call 301-286-3978 or visit http://visitorcenterevents.gsfc.nasa.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=event.showEventDescription



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