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MEMBERS-ONLY: - 40th Anniversary Celebration: Voyager in Space
July 31st, 2017 7:30pm
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Join us for a 40th anniversary celebration of NASA's Voyager mission with a sneak peek at a new documentary -- THE FARTHEST -- airing on PBS in August. A lively panel discussion follows with Timothy Ferris, highly-acclaimed science writer, and Carolyn Porco, imaging scientist on both Voyager and the more recent Cassini mission. Mark Pine, Deputy Director, Griffith Observatory, and former NASA and Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) staff member will facilitate the discussion.


THE FARTHEST is a documentary that tells the captivating tales of the people and events behind one of humanity’s greatest achievements in exploration: NASA’s Voyager missions. The twin spacecraft—each with less computing power than a cell phone—used slingshot trajectories to visit Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. They sent back unprecedented images and data that revolutionized our understanding of the spectacular outer planets and their many peculiar moons.


Still going strong 40 years after launch, each spacecraft carries an iconic golden record with greetings, music and images from Earth—a gift for any aliens that might one day find it. Voyager 1, which left our solar system and ushered humanity into the interstellar age in 2012, is the farthest-flung object humans have ever created. A billion years from now, when our Sun has flamed out and burned Earth to a cinder, the Voyagers and their golden records will still be sailing on.


Attendees are invited to a dessert reception afterwards to chat with the panelists -- and to raise a glass to the extraordinary achievements of the Voyager missions.


Timothy Ferris - Golden Record Producer
Timothy Ferris is a science writer and the best-selling author of 12 books, including The Science of Liberty (2010) and Coming of Age in the Milky Way (1988), for which he was awarded the American Institute of Physics Prize and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. He also wrote The Whole Shebang: A State-of-the-Universe(s) Report (1997), a popular science book on the study of the universe. After starting his career as a newspaper reporter, Ferris became an editor at Rolling Stone magazine. Ferris was instrumental in producing the Voyager Golden Record, an artifact of human civilization containing music, sounds of Earth and encoded photographs which was fastened to the side of the twin Voyager spacecraft. He has also served as a consultant to NASA on long-term space exploration policy, and was among the journalists selected as candidates to fly aboard the Space Shuttle in 1986. He was also a collaborator with, and friend of, the late American astronomer Carl Sagan.


Carolyn Porco - Imaging Science
Carolyn Porco played instrumental roles in the taking of three iconic photographs of planet Earth from the outer solar system including participating in the planning and execution of the 1990 "Portrait of the Planets" taken by the Voyager 1 spacecraft, which included the famous Pale Blue Dot image of Earth. As the imaging science team lead on the Cassini mission, she is an expert on planetary rings and the Saturnian moon, Enceladus. She has co-authored more than 110 scientific papers on subjects ranging from the spectroscopy of Uranus and Neptune, the interstellar medium, the photometry of planetary rings, satellite/ring interactions, computer simulations of planetary rings, the thermal balance of Triton's polar caps, heat flow in the interior of Jupiter, and a suite of results on the atmosphere, satellites, and rings of Saturn from the Cassini imaging experiment. Porco has also won a number of awards and honors for her contributions to science and the public sphere including being named by the New Statesman as one of 'The 50 People Who Matter Today' in 2009. In 2010 she was awarded the Carl Sagan Medal for Excellence in the Communication of Science to the Public by the American Astronomical Society. In 2012, she was named one of the 25 most influential people in space by Time magazine.




Reservations are required. In the case of a sold out show, any tickets not picked up by 7:40 p.m. will be made available to wait-listed guests. If online registration is closed, please email to join the wait-list. Please include your name and the number of seats you would like to reserve. RSVP deadline is JULY 31, 4:00 p.m.


If your membership has lapsed or you would like to become a new FOTO member, renew or join easily on-line at If you have any questions please send an email to Marc at or call 213.473.0879 about joining/renewing.

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