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Talk explores Laboratory's 50 years of space research

The talk, titled “Los Alamos National Laboratory’s 50 Years in Space,” will highlight the Laboratory’s significant discoveries and events in the field.
October 3, 2013
Laboratory fellow and astrophysicist Ed Fenimore, and Laboratory planetary scientist and principal investigator of the ChemCam team Roger Wiens, will talk about Los Alamos National Laboratory's 50 years of space research and exploration.

Laboratory fellow and astrophysicist Ed Fenimore, and Laboratory planetary scientist and principal investigator of the ChemCam team Roger Wiens, will talk about Los Alamos National Laboratory's 50 years of space research and exploration.

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“In its first year on the red planet, ChemCam returned more than 75,000 chemical spectra from more than 2,000 locations in the vicinity of the rover, finding that the Martian dust contains water, and that rocks near the landing site show more diverse volcanism than was previously thought possible on Mars,” Wiens said.

Talk Oct. 9 at Bradbury Science Museum

LOS ALAMOS, N.M., Oct. 3, 2013—Los Alamos National Laboratory launched its first satellite in 1963, which began an incredible series of space experiments. To celebrate the Laboratory’s 50 years of space research and exploration, Roger Wiens, of the Laboratory’s Space and Remote Sensing group and principal investigator for the ChemCam instrument used on the Curiosity Rover on Mars, and Laboratory fellow and astrophysicist Ed Fenimore, will talk about the Laboratory’s many achievements at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 9 at the Bradbury Science Museum as part of the Laboratory’s 70th Anniversary Lecture Series.

The talk, titled “Los Alamos National Laboratory’s 50 Years in Space,” will highlight the Laboratory’s significant discoveries and events in the field. One of LANL’s latest achievements in space is the exploration of Mars using the ChemCam laser instrument on the Curiosity rover.

“In its first year on the red planet, ChemCam returned more than 75,000 chemical spectra from more than 2,000 locations in the vicinity of the rover, finding that the Martian dust contains water, and that rocks near the landing site show more diverse volcanism than was previously thought possible on Mars,” Wiens said.

Fenimore will talk about the data collected from the Laboratory’s space instruments over the years, and research in areas such as solar physics, astrophysics, planetary science, Earth science and space weather.

Wiens will conclude the talk with an update of the Curiosity rover on Mars. To learn more about the Laboratory’s space exploration and research see the 50 Years of Space Timeline.

The Laboratory has been involved in more than 200 launches; a record that few institutions can match. Throughout the years, virtually every area of space research has been explored at Los Alamos. Through this research the Laboratory has made many fundamental discoveries.

“Los Alamos’ scientists, engineers and technicians have accomplished remarkable things and I’m looking forward to hearing two of the Laboratory’s distinguished researchers talk about a history that they helped write,” Bradbury Science Museum Director Linda Deck said.

About the 70th anniversary lecture series

For those who wish to attend but cannot, all 70th Anniversary Lectures are recorded and are available for viewing from the Bradbury Science Museum website.

Mensa, an internationally recognized high-IQ society, named the Bradbury Science museum as one of the top 10 “Favorite Science Museums.”

All events at the Bradbury Science Museum are free and open to the public. Bradbury Science Museum is located at 1350 Central Ave., in downtown Los Alamos. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m., Sunday and Monday.

About Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory, a multidisciplinary research institution engaged in strategic science on behalf of national security, is operated by Los Alamos National Security, LLC, a team composed of Bechtel National, the University of California, The Babcock & Wilcox Company, and URS for the Department of Energy's National Nuclear Security Administration.

Los Alamos enhances national security by ensuring the safety and reliability of the U.S. nuclear stockpile, developing technologies to reduce threats from weapons of mass destruction, and solving problems related to energy, environment, infrastructure, health, and global security concerns.


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