Minutes for our May 2012 meeting

Seven members attended this May. We had a great meeting which opened with excited and lively discussions of SpaceX successful mission to the International Space Station. Congratulations SpaceX!

Thanks to Tom and Mark for bringing in a new remote control rover and camera. We had a great time experimenting with the rover and planning exhibits with the rover for Moon day and other chapter events.

We also discussed t-shirts for the upcoming Mars Society Convention. Thanks Mark for your creative work on the t-shirt design, it looked great!

We also talked about the university rover competition at MDRS. Kurt and Kris are planning to help out with the competition at MDRS this year.

We also discussed the upcoming Dallas Museum of Nature and Science Discovery days. Curtis mentioned NSS is planning a table at this event.

Last we discussed the AIAA awards banquet on June 7th at the Crowne Plaza. Mr. Ralph Heath is the distinguished speaker for the event. Mr. Heath recently retired from Lockheed as the executive vice president of the Aeronautics Business area.


Meeting Minutes for February 2012


Our attendance was 14 at last month’s meeting – a near record.  Of course, that is one more than the current record of people in space at one time, something to think about:  we’ve come a long way (we had 13 people in space at one time!) and have a long way to go (the largest number sent into space at one time could fit in a restaurant room).

We welcomed Ken R., President of the Dallas Chapter of the National Space Society, who gave a very broad and informative overview of the space program and the different directions it could go after the Shuttle.  There is an old saying ‘a seed must die for a flower to bloom’, and while the Shuttle was inspiring in its day, its passing will enable new adventures.  Ken’s discussion and slide show set a new standard for our group. Thank you Ken!

We also welcomed the three students and their coaches from the student debate team. The team is one of 8 finalists debating on an international level, discussing whether human travel should play a significant role in space travel: our group has been helping them prepare. Good luck and go get them in New York!

We also discussed Dr. Zubrin’s talk on the Space Show on February 21st (http://www.thespaceshow.com).

We then closed the meeting with a discussion of Kurt’s upcoming presentation for gifted students at SMU, and Moon Day which will be held at the Frontiers of Flight Museum on July 21st .

Next month we can continue our plans for Moon Day, supporting the University Rover Competition, the preparation of the papers from the past conventions (still moving forward slowly), and of course the upcoming national convention in LA, coincident with the landing of Mars Science Laboratory.  On a more serious note, we have to still keep up the struggle to bring back Mars funding into NASA’s budget.  The issue is not dead, and the battle is still undecided.  More on that later.

See you in a few weeks!


Meeting This Week, Sunday, Feb 26!


Yes, it is time again!  Meeting this Sunday, February 26, at the Spaghetti Warehouse in Plano, off of rt 75 at 15th street, at 6:30pm.

Ken of the NSS will be there to give a 60 – 90 minute talk about space exploration – everything from near term to space based solar power and whatever.  He brings his own projector and so this promises to be a good show.

Tom brings us news of success with the student debating team arguing the issue of manned space exploration (I won’t tell all the details, but they have won an all expense paid trip to NYC, so they are doing mighty well!)  our dallas chapter has had the opportunity to help coach them on the next round as the argue for ‘The Case for Mars’.

Kris brings us more on the slow but still moving forward saga of publishing the past Mars convention papers, and the URC competition.

Also on our minds is the fateful 2013 NASA budget, which promises to knock back Mars exploration by years (that is a lot of extra spaghetti dinners till our last meeting – we’ll have that one while watching the first human set foot on Mars).  We really do need a call to arms on this one, and we can discuss what we have done and will do.  If you have already written your congressman or the President, please bring a printout of your letter to share with the group.

See you this Sunday.


January 2012 Minutes

Our January meeting was a great start to the New Year. There were nine persons in attendance. The conversation was lively and fun. Discussion topics included exciting plans for the upcoming year.

Mark was back from Florida after being one of the Tweetup VIP’s for the MSL launch. We were excited to hear Mark’s first-hand accounting of the MSL launch.

We were also excited to discuss April’s tour at MDRS. The crew’s agenda was to plan for a pilot Mars 101 course enabling first and second year college students to participate in planetary analog research (http://www.marssociety.org/home/press/announcements/teamtexasarriveatmdrs)

We discussed the Orion spacecraft exhibit which was at the American Airlines center in Dallas in January. Several members from the Dallas Mars Society and National Space Society attended the event.

We shared good memories from the National Space Society Christmas party which was held at Carol’s house in December. Members had a great time at the party.

We discussed upcoming events which include below:

The National Space Society poetry contest on subject – Mars the Next Frontier:  Exploration and Settlement of Space.  Deadline for submission for the contest is July 31st 2012.  http://www.nssofnt.org/activities/poetry-contest-2/poetry-contest-2012/

ConDFW Convention (http://www.condfw.org/) – February 17th – 19th 2012

ISDC 2012 (http://isdc.nss.org/2012/) – May 24th – 28th 2012

University Rover Challenge (http://urc.marssociety.org/home): May 31st – June 2nd 2012

Frontiers of Flight Museum (http://www.flightmuseum.com) Moon Day – July 2012

15th Annual Mars Society Convention (http://www.marssociety.org) – August 3rd -5th 2012

We look forward to our guest speaker at our February meeting.  Ken Ruffin, president of the local NSS chapter, will give a talk on the future of space exploration.