MEDIA RELATIONS OFFICE
JET PROPULSION LABORATORY
CALIFORNIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION
PASADENA, CALIF. 91109 TELEPHONE (818) 354-5011
Contact: Jane Platt (818) 354-0880
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 17, 2000
JPL PUBLIC LECTURES ZOOM IN ON ASTEROIDS AND COMETS
Comets and asteroids that may pass close to Earth are
explored in free, public lectures to be held at Jet Propulsion
Laboratory on Thursday, Jan. 20, and at Pasadena City College on
Friday, Jan. 21.
Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis for the
lectures, titled "Near-Earth Objects -- Finding Them Before They
The featured speaker is Dr. Donald Yeomans, a senior
research scientist at JPL who is a renowned expert on comets and
asteroids, the leftovers from the formation of our solar system.
Yeomans manages NASA's Near-Earth Object Office, is project
scientist of the MUSES-CN mission to explore the surface of an
asteroid, and is on the science teams for the Near-Earth Asteroid
Rendezvous mission and two planned comet missions. Yeomans has
received numerous awards, and the asteroid 2956 Yeomans was named
in honor of his professional achievements.
"These comets and asteroids that can approach Earth can be
either friend or foe," Yeomans said. "They have played a key role
in the development of life on Earth and their collisions with
Earth have wiped out many developing species. While sometimes
threatening, these near-Earth objects can also supply the
valuable raw materials necessary for the future colonization of
the inner solar system."
The lecture at JPL, located at 4800 Oak Grove Dr., Pasadena,
near the Oak Grove Dr. exit of the 210 (Foothill) Freeway, will
be held in the von Karman Auditorium. On Friday, the lecture will
be held in Pasadena City College's Forum at 1570 E. Colorado
Blvd. For more information, call (818) 354-5011.
JPL, a NASA center, is a division of the California
Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena.