Jim Bell joined The Planetary Society's Board of Directors in 2005 and had been President of the Board since 2008. A professor of astronomy and planetary science at Arizona State University in Tempe, Jim is also the lead scientist for the Pancam color imaging system on the Mars Exploration Rovers and has written two books about his Mars work: Postcards from Mars and Mars 3-D: A Rover's Eye View of the Red Planet. He has also been actively or previously involved as a science team member of the NASA Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous, Mars Pathfinder, Mars Odyssey, Comet Nucleus Tour, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, and Mars Science Laboratory missions.
Philip R. Christensen is a Regents Professor and the Ed and Helen Korrick Professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration at Arizona State University. As a geologist and geophysicist, his research interests focus on the composition, processes, and physical properties of Mars, the Earth, and other planetary surfaces. He has built five science instruments that have flown on NASA missions to Mars, including the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) camera on Mars Odyssey, the Miniature Thermal Emission Spectrometer (Mini-TES) instruments on the Mars Exploration Rovers, and the TES on Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Observer. He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union. He completed his Ph.D. in Geophysics and Space Physics at UCLA in 1981.
Professor Kip Hodges is Director, School of Earth and Space Exploration and Foundation Professor of Geological Sciences, Arizona State University. He is a multidisciplinary scientist and educator who enjoys planning and executing new visions of higher education. After receiving B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Geology from the University of North Carolina and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), he spent the bulk of his professional career as Professor of Geology at MIT (23 years) and the past 6 years, at Arizona State University (ASU). His research on the evolution of mountain ranges, thermodynamics, kinetics, and planetary science has resulted in 146 peer-reviewed professional papers. He has served as Editor-in-Chief for two professional journals, and is a Fellow of both the American Geophysical Union and the Geological Society of America.
Lawrence M. Krauss is a renowned cosmologist and science popularizer, and is Foundation Professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration, and director of the Origins Project at Arizona State University. Hailed by Scientific American as a rare public intellectual, he is also the author of more than three hundred scientific publications and nine books, including the international bestseller, The Physics of Star Trek, and his most recent bestseller entitled A Universe from Nothing, now being translated into 20 languages.
Michael Laine has been involved with Space Elevator research since the definitive 2001-3 NASA study. At LiftPort he manages a talented team from academia, government, commercial and military communities. Laine’s team has created carbon nanotubes, discovered a new metal alloy, and built robots that climbed a mile into the sky. Laine’s business management, coupled with his media, marketing and outreach skills have transformed this project from an obscure NASA paper study to a real world program – with tangible results.
Chris Lewicki performed system engineering development and participated in assembly, test and launch operations for both Mars missions. He was Flight Director for the rovers Spirit and Opportunity, and the Surface Mission Manager for Phoenix. The recipient of two NASA Exceptional Achievement Medals, Lewicki has an asteroid named in his honor: 13609 Lewicki. Chris holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Arizona. At Planetary Resources, Mr. Lewicki is responsible for the strategic development of the company’s mission and vision, engagement with customers and the scientific community, serves as technical compass, and leads day to day operations.
William Pomerantz is the Vice President for Special Projects at Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic, the world's first spaceline. Virgin Galactic is building on the legacy of the ANSARI X PRIZE-winning SpaceShipOne, bringing a fleet of commercial spacecraft into service for private, civil, and scientific passengers. Some of the 'Special Projects' will has worked on are the LauncherOne small satellite launch vehicle and the use of SpaceShipTwo as a research platform, among others.
Dr. Sian Proctor is a geology professor at South Mountain Community College in Phoenix, Arizona. Throughout her adult life she has pushed herself to take on new challenges and to learn new things that she can bring back into the classroom. She is continually developing new ways to engage her students and to present scientific information in interesting ways. She has a strong curriculum development background, has traveled and taught around the world, was a finalist for the 2009 NASA Astronaut Program, and was on the Discovery Channel reality TV show called The Colony. The goal of the Education Outreach Program is to document and disseminate to the general population the HI-SEAS research projects occurring during the two week MDRS mission and the four-month mission in Hawaii.
Srikanth Saripalli is a Roboticist with research interests in unmanned systems in general and aerial vehicles in particular. His research focuses on robotic exploration: particularly in air and space and necessary foundations in perception, planning and control for this domain. His work spans algorithmic design and implementation to field experimentation of aerial robots that explore difficult, dangerous and usually inaccessible places on earth and other planetary bodies to further scientific knowledge.
Dr. Harold White has accumulated over 15 years of experience working in the aerospace industry with Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and NASA. He currently serves as the Advanced Propulsion Theme Lead for the NASA Engineering Directorate and is the JSC representative to the Nuclear Systems Working Group. In his role, Dr. White is serving to help the Agency incorporate high TRL advanced power and propulsion technologies into near and mid-term human exploration architectures. Over the past 15 years, Dr. White has worked with members of academia, industry, and government to further grow this area of research resulting in many published papers, presentations, development and study of physics models, engineering tools, and the implementation and execution of multiple high fidelity experimental efforts.