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This event is SOLD OUT

The DynaTheater seating capacity has been reached, so the “Pluto-Palooza” presentation Friday evening is sold out. However, if you still want to come to the museum, several hands-on activities and videos related to Pluto will be available in the atrium.

Also, Friday and Saturday at 1 p.m. in the planetarium, “Pluto in the Round” will show an all-dome video of the dwarf planet along with live commentary from the New Horizon team. It’s free with museum or planetarium admission and seating will be first-come, first-served until capacity of the planetarium is reached.


Special September Space Science Event                                                 

“PLUTO-PALOOZA ABQ”  • NASA’s New Horizons mission to Pluto and the Kuiper BeltThe Voyage of Exploration Continues                                                                                           

Friday • September 21 • 6:30pm

In this high-energy science extravaganza, special visiting guests who are members of the New Horizons Mission science and engineering teams will present the stunning images and science gathered during the Pluto flyby and discuss future plans for this ongoing mission. Special guests include eminent planetary scientists Dr. John Spencer and Dr. Cathy Olkin, astronomer Dr. Con Tsang, and engineer/mission operations manager Alice Bowman. This is a one-of-a-kind event!

Cost: ONLY $5 per person. Pre-registration is encouraged or tickets can be purchased at the door the evening of the event (if seats are available).

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Pluto-Palooza is made possible by support from NASA


Additional info on each speaker....this is a real "A" Team of eminent experts....

Our guest speakers are all science or engineering team members on the New Horizons Mission:

• Planetary Scientist Dr. John Spencer, New Horizons Team Member, is an Institute Scientist at Southwest Research Institute’s Department of Space Studies in Boulder, Colorado. John specializes in studies of the moons of the outer planets, working both on NASA’s Galileo mission to Jupiter and the Cassini Saturn orbiter. He now leads the planning of the January 1, 2019 flyby of the small Kuiper Belt Object, “2014 MU69.”  In 2016 he won the American Geophysical Union (AGU) Whipple Award for “outstanding contributions in the field of planetary science”.

• Engineer Alice Bowman works for the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, where she is the Mission Operations Manager—or “MOM”—for NASA’s New Horizons mission, which made the first visit to Pluto in 2015. She leads the team that controls the spacecraft, now about 3.7 billion miles from Earth.

• Planetary Scientist Dr. Cathy Olkin, is Deputy Project Scientist for NASA’s New Horizons mission and works in the Office of the Principal Investigator at Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, CO. Her main research topic is the atmospheres and surfaces of cold outer solar system worlds.  She is responsible for the Ralph instrument on New Horizons which provides color images and surface composition information using infrared spectroscopy.

•Astronomer Dr. Constantine (Con) Tsang is a Senior Research Scientist at the Southwest Research Institute and a member of the New Horizons science team. His main field of research is in planetary atmospheres, both of major planets such as Venus, as well as satellites like Io and the Moon. He uses data from ground-based telescopes, space-borne telescopes and orbiting spacecraft, and has experience in observations using ultraviolet, near-infrared and mid-infrared wavelengths.  

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