Tag: Lake Vostok

ECWG dinner talk will be on astrobiology

ECWG dinner talk will be on astrobiology

Marc Kaufman, who writes about NASA and space issues for The Washington Post, will talk on “Lake Vostok and the Burgeoning Science of Astrobiology” at the ECWG’s Saturday, May 19, Cosmos Club dinner.

Marc Kaufman

He will describe how the hunt for life beyond Earth is taking researchers to the most extreme environments on our planet – Lake Vostok in Antarctica, the deep gold mines of South Africa, the Atacama Desert – as well as into space and soon onto the surface of Mars.

Kaufman’s  Jan. 31, 2012 Washington Post story explains why astrobiologists are interested in Antarctica’s Lake Vostok.

He has been a reporter on the Post’s national staff for ten years.  Kaufman has also worked as a foreign correspondent at the Post, reporting from Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks, and as New Delhi bureau chief for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

His articles have appeared in the Washington Post, Philadelphia Inquirer Sunday, and New York magazines, as well as Smithsonian and Condé Nast Traveler.

In his book: “First Contact: Scientific Breakthroughs in the Hunt for Life Beyond Earth” (Simon & Schuster), Kaufman suggests that, as never before, we now have the knowledge and technology to answer that question, and will likely find life beyond Earth in the next generation.

For the book, he traveled the world to learn firsthand about the innovative and extensive research under way to understand and ultimately identify extraterrestrial life, and he reports from the Vatican about efforts to reconcile some of the discoveries with religious belief. Kaufman says his past work as a foreign correspondent prepared him for this study of the newly emerging and dynamic field of astrobiology.

The dinner costs $50 for each person. The evening begins with cocktail hour at 6 p.m.

Reservations must be received before noon, on Monday, March 14 by Bill Runyon, 1812 19th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20009, (202) 234-7490, or email:  bill.runyon@verizon.net

March talk on Antarctica climbing and cruising

March talk on Antarctica climbing and cruising

The Explorers Club Washington Group’s March event will be a luncheon meeting at noon on Wednesday, March 28 at the headquarters of Diplomatic and Consular Officers, Retired (DACOR), 1801 F Street NW, Washington.

Gary J. Kopff MN ’91 will give an illustrated talk on:

  • Cruising across the Drake Passage from Ushuaia, Argentina to the Antarctic Peninsula with zodiac trips to the shore to experience penguins and seals and to visit the U.S. Palmer Station.
  • CLIMBING the highest mountain in the Antarctic (the Vinson Massif) in the Ellsworth Mountains with his friends  the late  international  climbing guides Rob Hall in 1961 and 1996 and Gary Ball in 1953 and 1993.

Kopff is avid mountain climber who has reached the summits of the highest mountains in Africa, Europe, and Antarctica. He and his wife, Judy, have traveled throughout the world to see endangered and threatened species. In addition they volunteer frequently as clowns for various non-profit organizations including for Wounded Warriors and their families at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center,  and pediatric units at local hospitals.

The Luncheon costs $40.00 per person, including wine. Reservations must be made before noon Friday, March 23, with Bill Runyon, 1812 19th St. NW, Washington DC 20009, (202) 234 7490  Bill.runyon@verizon.net