"Seeing the Unseen: Using Spaceborne Radars in Earth and Planetary Exploration" is the latest in Jet Propulsion Laboratory's (JPL) free von Karman Lectures, taking place at JPL on Thursday, Sept. 21 and at Pasadena City College on Friday, Sept. 22. The lecture will focus on the advanced radar sensing technology currently being used to probe the surface and subsurface of Earth and other planetary bodies.

Presented by Dr. Charles Elachi, director of JPL's space and Earth science programs, the lecture will highlight the endless discovery opportunities made possible by radar sensing, which can be used to produce images of targets that cannot be seen through other observing techniques. Elachi will cover the breakthroughs expected within the next decade when radar sensors will be used to probe the possible oceans below the surface of Jupiter's moon Europa, to map buried channels on Mars, to image the Earth in 3-D and to search for buried traces of old civilizations.

Throughout his 30-year career at JPL, Elachi has played a significant role in transforming the Laboratory and NASA into world leaders in the field of spaceborne imaging radars. In the last decade, he has been responsible for the development of more than 45 flight instruments and missions for Earth science, astrophysics and planetary exploration at JPL and has received numerous national and international awards. Elachi holds several patents and has authored more than 200 publications in a variety of space and science fields. He is the author of three textbooks in the field of remote sensing and was deemed one of "Southern California's rising stars who will make a difference in L.A." by the Los Angeles Times in 1988.

The von Karman Lecture Series is sponsored by the JPL's Public Services Office. Thursday lectures take place in JPL's von Karman Auditorium located at 4800 Oak Grove Dr. in Pasadena, while Friday lectures are given in Pasadena City College's Voslow Forum at 1570 E. Colorado Blvd. Both begin promptly at 7 p.m., with seating available on a first-come, first-served basis.

More information on the von Karman Lecture Series can be found at or by calling (818) 354-0112. JPL is managed for NASA by the California Institute of Technology.

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