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Science Talk - Andrew Fraknoi - 50 Years Since Our First Step: What Do We Know about Where the Moon Came from, its Puzzling Motions, and Its Future?

A Talk by astronomer Andrew Fraknoi

July 20, 2019 is the 50th anniversary of humanity’s first steps on the surface of the Moon. In that time, the Apollo missions, a fleet of robotic probes, and observations from Earth have taught us a lot about Earth’s surprising satellite. In this non-technical talk, Andrew Fraknoi, who is sometimes called the Bay Area’s public astronomer, will look at the past, present, and future of the Moon, including its violent origins, the mystery of the frozen water we have found at its poles, and its long-term future as it moves further and further away from us.

Illustrated with beautiful images taken from orbit and on the surface, his talk will make the Moon come alive as an eerie world next door, as a changing object in our skies, and as a possible future destination for humanity and its ambitions. Come find out how the achievements of the Apollo program fit into the bigger picture of our involvement with our only natural satellite.

Andrew Fraknoi recently retired as the Chair of the Astronomy Department at Foothill College, and now teaches non-credit astronomy courses for seniors at the Fromm Institute at the University of San Francisco and the OLLI Program at San Francisco State. He also served as the Executive Director of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific for 14 years and was named the California Professor of the Year in 2007. Fraknoi appears regularly on local and national radio, explaining astronomical developments in everyday language. He is the lead author on a free, open-source college astronomy textbook published by the non-profit OpenStax project at Rice University, and has written two illustrated books for children and two published science fiction stories. The International Astronomical Union has named Asteroid 4859 Asteroid Fraknoi to honor his contributions to the public understanding of science.   

Tickets do not guarantee entry to this event, but registering on Eventbrite is a great way to get an email reminder! First come, first served.  This program is sponsored by the Santa Clara City Library Foundation & Friends.



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