Space programmes are often viewed as an expensive luxury, even for developed nations, and are criticised for swallowing resources that might be better spent on social needs such as hospitals. However, in the 21st century, space is inextricably part of our lives. Exploration has revealed the incredible diversity of the Solar System and helped us understand the fragility of Earth and the risks to our continued survival. Space has also become a platform for communications and other applications, without which we would now be unable to function. This talk will discuss how space exploration has been the inspiration for a thriving global space industry, which delivers important social and economic returns to countries, and looks forward to exciting future exploration missions.
Martin Barstow joined the University of Leicester in 1979, becoming Professor of Astrophysics & Space Science (2003), head of Physics & Astronomy (2005-09), head of Science & Engineering (2009-16) and Pro-Vice Chancellor/Director of the Leicester Institute of Space & Earth Observation. His research is into hot white dwarf stars and the interstellar medium and he has published more than 400 papers. He has been involved in many space missions, including Voyager, ROSAT, EUVE, FUSE, Hubble and ESA’s Gaia astrometry mission. He has been a member of the ESA Astronomy Working Group, UKSA Space Programme Advisory Committee and president of the Royal Astronomical Society (2014-16). He is currently Chair of Space Telescope Institute Council, a member of the board of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy and was appointed Chair of the UK Space Agency Science Programme Advisory Committee in July 2019. He is the originator of the concept of Space Park Leicester, creating an economic space cluster with industry partners, and a leader in its development. He also leads the SPRINT project, supporting growth of small companies in the space sector.
Tickets: $10 Non-Members/ $8 Members