Space For Everyone

Mike Mongo

Author & Astronaut Teacher

Mike Mongo, author of The Astronaut Instruction Manual and host of Mike Mongo’s Astronaut Adventures, is an astronaut teacher, encouraging students around the world to see themselves pursuing futures in space. “Tomorrow’s jobs are in space. Giving students today permission to imagine themselves living, working, and playing in space tomorrow is essential. We solve all the challenges we face on earth–health, energy, sustainability, equity, even the illusion of scarcity–by solving for space,” says Mike.

Dr. Danielle Wood

Director

Space Enabled Research Group

Professor Danielle Wood serves as an Assistant Professor in Media Arts and Science and holds a joint appointment in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Within the MIT Media Lab, Prof. Wood leads the Space Enabled Research Group which seeks to advance justice in Earth’s complex systems using designs enabled by space. Prof. Wood is a scholar of societal development with a background that includes satellite design, earth science applications, systems engineering, and technology policy. In her research, Prof. Wood applies these skills to design innovative systems that harness space technology to address development challenges around the world. Prior to serving as faculty at MIT, Professor Wood held positions at NASA Headquarters, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Aerospace Corporation, John Hopkins University, and the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs. Prof. Wood studied at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she earned a PhD in engineering systems, SM in aeronautics and astronautics, SM in technology policy, and SB in aerospace engineering.

Ron Sparkman

Chief Curiosity Correspondent

Space Foundation Discovery Center

Ron Sparkman is the Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Stardom (@StardomSpace), a space media company with the mission to make space & science more approachable & accessible to everyone on the planet. Via this platform, Stardom’s international team covers space news, science communication events, rocket launches, space & science museums, and more. 

Ron is the social media consultant for the Space Foundation where he acts as the Chief Curiosity Correspondent for the Space Foundation Discovery Center. Ron is also the Communications and Social Media Manager for Explore Mars and Operations for the Humans to Mars Summit.  

He is also the co-founder of the Out Astronaut Project, co-creator of I Love Mars, host of The Mars Society’s Red Planet Radio, Advanced Academy astronaut trainee at Project PoSSUM, and 2018 finalist in the #StudentAstronaut contest for Emily Calandrelli’s Xploration Outer Space.

Rachel Lyons

Executive Director

Space for Humanity

Rachel Lyons is a key advocate in the advancement of the space perspective and exploration. Rachel is the Executive Director of Space for Humanity, a non-profit organizing the planet’s first Citizen Astronaut Mission led by a diverse group of leaders from around the globe. Rachel is the former Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors of Students for the Exploration and Development of Space – USA. She is a former public radio host. She holds a BSc. in Aerospace Engineering and Economics from the University of Miami.

Astronauts return from space with a new understanding of life on earth — from the environment to politics, resources to energy, to humanitarian issues. Rachel believes this perspective is essential in addressing the challenges we face globally, as well as creating a connection to each other and our home planet earth. She is committed to providing opportunities for people of diverse backgrounds to expand their perspective – both for the futuristic vision of humanity, and for our world today.

Rui Moura

Professor

Universidade do Porto

Rui Moura is from Portugal, a professor and researcher at the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Porto. He graduated from the University of Aveiro in Geological Engineering and and later completed a PhD from the University of Aveiro in Geophysics. Currently a researcher at the Institute of Earth Sciences (ICT-Porto) and also the vice- director of the Geophysical Institute of the University of Porto. One of his research interests, at the moment, is in the geophysical properties of Lunar Regolith having also conducted microgravity experiments within that topic. His field of research has gtiven him more than 20 years of geophysical field work, thus plenty of experience in performing scientific measurements in some harsh wild environments. He also researches and lectures in topics related to natural hazards and risk assessment and was responsible for setting up current Earthquake Risk Assessment guidelines for Kyrgyzstan’s government.

Rui, is also a licensed pilot, since 1993, currently holding night flying and aerobatic ratings and having piloted over 25 different aircraft types (from light aircraft to military jets). He also participated for three years in aerobatic competition as well as five years in forest fire surveillance actions.

Rui, joined the Polar Suborbital Science in the Upper Mesosphere group, PoSSUM, in 2016, graduating from the International Institute for Astronautical Sciences (IIAS) Scientist-Astronaut 1601 class, as well as various other space exploration courses. He is now in charge of the Space For All Nations (SFAN), an initiative born of IIAS aimed at identifying and increasing opportunities and engagements for space science and space exploration students from emerging space nations.

Recently he has also made efforts in Portugal to promote human space flight using authentic artifact exhibitions and has also been invited to numerous public talks, media interviews and conference events.

He is fluent in Portuguese, English and speaks conversationally in Spanish, French as well as some Russian.

In his spare time, besides flying, he enjoys reading, cycling, running and tennis. He is married and has one daughter.