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Hans Kruse to discuss the challenges of space communication at next Science Café

From staff reports | Feb 27, 2018
Hans Kruse.
Hans Kruse. Photo credit: Ohio University.

What makes exploration of our solar system so challenging? Is it the vastness of space?

“It is time,” argues Hans Kruse, professor and director of the J. Warren McClure School of Information and Telecommunication Systems. “It is the time it takes us to get to places like Mars, and it is the time it takes to get a message from Earth to Mars.”

Kruse will draw on his decade of work with the NASA Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) on their next-generation communication software to convey the challenges, solutions and limitations facing humanity as we send expeditions to even the nearest planets. 

During his Science Café, “Can You Hear Me Now…Or Later,” Kruse will discuss the JPL Curiosity mission. It launched in 2011, landed nine months later and executed the most technically difficult landing sequence ever attempted by JPL without any ground control assistance. Kruse will talk about the need for autonomy in robotic systems and making astronauts much more self-sufficient during space missions.

He also will apply these concepts to Earth-based projects that take advantage of these communication capabilities to deliver e-mail to remote villages in Norway and monitor water quality in rural Appalachia.

Have you ever wondered what talking to Earth from Mars might be like? Come join us for Kruse’s Science Café at 5 p.m. on Wed., March 7.

Science Cafés are part of Ohio University’s Café Series, Wednesdays at the Baker Center Front Room. The series provides a venue for students to informally share their interests during a conversational exchange with faculty presenters, staff and the Athens community. Free coffee is offered to the first 50 attendees, and participants who ask questions can win a free t-shirt.

The series is supported by the Ohio University Research Division and Sigma Xi.

Learn more! Watch the 1-minute Café Series video:


For the schedule of fall semester speakers and access to livestreaming of the event, visit http://www.ohio.edu/sciencecafe   and   http://livestream.com/ohiocas.