International Observe the Moon Night!

October 16, 2018

Hey everyone!


Nothing new to report on my research this week. I have mainly been revising for my qualification exam in November, covering impact cratering processes, igneous petrology, and planetary geomorphology. I am starting to move onto peer-reviewed journals to help me construct my presentation. At the moment  I am trying to find the best way to show the differences and similarities of lava flows and impact melt flows. The melt flows are not terrestrial, I am going to be getting LRO WAC and NAC images of melt flows on the Moon. 

I have also been editing my manuscript on Craters of the Moon. I recently got more edits from Dr Scott Hughes, Dr Alex Sehlke, and Dr Shannon Kobs Nawotniak. For the next week or so I will be going through the edits and improving my manuscript.


I may not have anything new to update everyone on but I can talk about an event that is coming up this Saturday, International Observe the Moon Night (InOMN). InOMN is an international public outreach event that celebrates the wonders of the Moon. During the night, event holders present and discuss what we have learned or can still learn about the Moon, its connection with NASA and other space agencies, the role the Moon plays in future planetary exploration, and to celebrate its 50th anniversary coming up next year the purpose and success of the Apollo missions (Apollo 11 team landed the lunar module Eagle on the Moon on July 20th, 1969). 


 Image source: Moon - NASA





From 5-9 pm this Saturday at the Cronyn Observatory at the University of Western Ontario, the Center for Planetary Science and Exploratio (CPSX) is hosting an InOMN event. If you are interested in attending, details are below.


I will be giving a 15 minute presentation about the Moon. Titled "To the Moon and Back Again", I will briefly cover the history and geology of the Moon, the Apollo mission era, and the future plans in planetary science involving the Moon. Following my presentation is a 15 minute talk on Titan, Saturn's largest moon by Josh Hedgepeth! His presentation is currently titled "Titan: an Earthlike Moon with the Potential for Life". Josh will most likely be talking about his talk on his blog this week so I will redirect you to him:


Currently, according to NASA, there are 649 events and participants ready to appreciate and learn about the Moon! With this many events worldwide, I think we can show the next generation the important role the Moon has to play in planetary exploration. After 1972, humans did not return to the surface of the Moon. The research and engineering quality from the 1960s and early 1970s showed how determined and capable we were, and we proved so many people wrong who said it is impossible to go to the Moon, absolutely impossible. Over the summer, when I was at LPI for my internship, I found out most of the staff and scientists in mission control were in their mid to late twenties. Most senior staff in their thirties and early fourties. I believe we have what it takes to return to the Moon, and I hope InOMN inspires the next generation to make that belief a reality.


This brings us to the end of the blog. Oh, if anyone is interested in listening to a podcast, I co-hosted my first gradcast guest last Tuesday and the episode is now available online. The episode is titled "Walking the Plank" with the description: let's all walk the plank with Abdullah Al-Jaja as he shares his research with us. This week, Nick and Gavin learn about how Abdullah's journey immigrating to Canada from Lebanon and is now investigating dopaminergic signalling and anxiety in Parkinson's disease, which involves patients walking on a small plank to induce stress. All the while, Abdullah walks his own plank every day balancing the rigor of graduate studies at Western and the devotion of a being father.         Episode available after 6:30 pm ET on the 10/16/2018


 Image: Left (myself), center (Abdullah Al-Jaja, Mind and Brain Institute), right (Nick Handfield-Jones, Neuroscience) 




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