The discovery of planets orbiting other stars has reignited the age-old search for other worlds. NASA’s Kepler Mission is hunting for Earth-size planets, with hundreds in the telescope’s sight, and has already found rocky planets like Earth. The ultimate question is: Are they habitable? Astronomer Geoff Marcy will present exciting results — not yet public — from his team’s latest research. Learn about their collaboration with biologists to assess the environmental conditions that are necessary to support life, especially intelligent life.
Tickets: $25 in advance, 30 at the door
6–7 p.m.—Light refreshments, a no-host bar, and an exclusive reception with the presenters for members of The Charter Hill Society
7–8:30 p.m.—Faculty presentation and audience Q&A
Geoff Marcy, professor of astronomy and the Alberts Chair in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, is a leading pioneer in the discovery and characterization of planets around other stars. He has detected the first multiple-planet system, the first Saturn-mass planet, and the first Neptune-mass planet. He is a co-investigator of NASA’s Kepler Mission, which has discerned more than 2,000 Earth-like planets since its launch in 2009. Marcy is an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and has received many awards, including the Carl Sagan Prize for Science Popularization, the Shaw Prize, and the NASA Medal for Exceptional Scientific Achievement. Discover Magazine selected Marcy as the 2000 California Scientist of the Year and the 2003 Space Scientist of the Year.