Friday, May 20, 2011

Sagan Medal to ASU's Jim Bell for excellence in science communications

Professor Jim Bell, planetary scientist at Arizona State University, is the 2011 recipient of the Carl Sagan Medal for Excellence in Public Communication in Planetary Science. The prize is named after the distinguished planetary scientist Carl Sagan (1934-1996), who through public lectures, television, and books, contributed significantly to the public’s understanding of planetary science. [right, credit DPS-AAS]

The Sagan Medal was established by the Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS) of the American Astronomical Society to recognize and honor outstanding science communication contributions by an active planetary scientist to the general public. It is awarded to scientists whose efforts have significantly contributed to a public understanding of, and enthusiasm for, planetary science. Bell is the twelfth recipient of the Sagan Medal and the first from Arizona State University.

Bell has been heavily involved in many NASA robotic space exploration missions, including the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous, Mars Pathfinder, Mars Exploration Rover, Mars Odyssey Orbiter, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, and the Mars Science Laboratory rover mission. As a member of the Mars Exploration Rover team, he has served as the lead scientist in charge of the Panoramic camera color, a stereoscopic imaging system on the Spirit and Opportunity rovers.

He is a frequent contributor to popular astronomy and science magazines like Sky & Telescope, Astronomy, and Scientific American, and to radio shows and internet blogs about astronomy and space. He has appeared on television on the NBC “Today” show, on CNN’s “This American Morning,” on the PBS “Newshour,” and on the Discovery, National Geographic, and History Channels. He has also written three photography-oriented books that showcase some of the most spectacular images of Mars and the Moon acquired during the space program: “Postcards from Mars” (Dutton/Penguin, 2006), “Mars 3-D” (Sterling, 2008), and “Moon 3-D” (Sterling, 2009).

In addition, Bell is president of the Planetary Society, the world’s largest public membership space exploration advocacy organization. The Carl Sagan Medal will be presented to Bell during the DPS 2011 meeting, Oct. 3-7, in Nantes, France.

[taken from the ASU news release]

No comments:

Post a Comment