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Guest: Dr. Eligar Sadeh; Topics: Elgar's STEM outreach program for high school students involving Mars analog sites, his "Mars Expedition: Red Planet Mission on Earth" program.
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We welcomed Dr. Eligar Sadeh back to the program to tell us about his new STEM outreach program for high school students, the "Mars Expedition: Red Planet Mission on Earth" program. Please check out the mission brochure which has been uploaded to the blog for this program as it may answer some of the questions you are sure to have after listening to our discussion.
Since I will assume you have read the brochure as I write this summary, I'll highlight some of the discussion points. First, I liked the idea of getting Native American permission, probably Navajo, to have analog sites on tribal lands including Monument Valley. While I am not so sure permission is easily obtained, I have been to Monument Valley many times on my own and with my two sons. I love the place and I think it would be an exceptional place for Mars Analog STEM outreach learning. Other sites in Utah and possibly Arizona or even New Mexico would also be terrific for this venture, but I would want to know ahead of time the details of the sites. In fact, since the project is not yet operational, I trust that Eligar will be able to provide specific details that were absent in today's discussion when it comes time for students to apply and sign up.
Toward the end of the segment, I suggested to Eligar that they take advantage of the night sky because it will be clear and giant compared to what city inhabitants see each night. I suggested they should do some basic astronomy and bring some decent telescopes on the expedition. I believe that would certainly be a STEM enhancement even if not part of the official course work for the class part of the program or the expedition part. I suspect adding in the night sky would be an attraction for the program. Living off the land and learning how to do that seems valuable and high school is a good time to learn it. Being able to sustain yourself for a time out in the wild or the wilderness should be a skill taught to all students today and high school seems an appropriate age. When I was younger scouting programs did this plus there were other options, but they may not be around today though I am not up on scouting 2023. If a listener is, post some news about scouting programs on our blog.
Dr. Sadeh's operational timeline is 2023-24. At this time he is in the development phase of the pilot program. f you have input for him, please get to him through the blog or his email address which he provided on air. You can also send comments for Eligar through me. As we moved toward the end of the program, I asked Eligar to update us on the academic space journal he edits, Astropolitics, which is peer reviewed academic journal. As you will hear him say, you can submit individual articles but when he says peer review, he means it so make sure your references are good ones, valid, and substantiate your commentary.
Please post your comments/questions for Dr. Sadeh on the blog for this show. You can read Eligar though the address he gave out on air or me.