“The exploration of space will go ahead, whether we join in it or not, and it is one of the great adventures of all time, and no nation which expects to be the leader of other nations can expect to stay behind in the race for space.”
President John F Kennedy
12 September 1962
MOON SPEECH given at Rice University.
This simple statement, given after only one successful manned mission by NASA, even before John Glenn did the first earth orbit and before the introduction of computers, but after declaring the intention to go to the moon “before this decade is out”, is the embodiment of the inspirational spirit behind humankind’s drive for adventure and exploration.
It is this spirit that also drives our efforts to both inspire the next generation of African Scientists and Engineers and the current generation to showcase the capabilities already on offer in Africa.
We hope you will find these words as pertinent and as inspirationally applicable today as they must have been for audiences in 1962!
Per ardua ad lunam – through adversity to the Moon!
Orion blazed into the morning sky at 7:05 a.m. EST on Dec. 5, 2014, lifting off from Space Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida on a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket. The Orion crew module splashed down approximately 4.5 hours later in the Pacific Ocean, 600 miles southwest of San Diego.
The test marked a major milestone on NASA’s Journey to Mars as the Orion spacecraft completed its first voyage to space, traveling farther than any spacecraft designed for astronauts has been in more than 40 years.
The Human Exploration & Operations Mission Directorate of NASA recently announced Dr. Ben Bussey will be their Chief Exploration Scientist.
I’m pleased this announcement is out and thrilled to welcome Ben to the intersection of human exploration and space science! Congratulations Ben!
– John Connolly Outgoing Chief Exploration Scientist
Ben J. Bussey is a planetary scientist. He earned a Ph.D. in planetary geology at University College London, England. In 2001, during his post-doctorate work at the University of Hawaii, he joined the ANSMET (Antarctic Search for METeorites) expedition to recover meteorites from the Antarctic glaciers. He worked at the Lunar and Planetary Institute in Houston and the European Space Agency, before joining the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory and becoming a senior staff scientist at that facility.
Bussey is specialized in the remote sensing of the surfaces of planets. He participated in the Near-Earth Asteroid Rendezvous-Shoemaker (NEAR) mission as a research scholar at Northwestern University, and co-authored an atlas of the Moon based on data and images from the Clementine mission. He has a particular interest in the lunar poles, using the Clementine images to locate crater cold traps for hydrogen deposits and mapping the so-called peaks of eternal light.