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Speaker Series: How to Survive on Mars

Brendan Byrne, event host

UPDATE: This event has reached maximum capacity. If you didn’t reserve a seat, host Brendan Byrne will be turning the talk into a Are We There Yet? Podcast episode later this week. Be sure to listen!

What: How to Survive on Mars: Exploring the technology that will save our first Martians
Hosted by: Brendan Byrne, 90.7 WMFE space reporter & host of Are We There Yet? podcast
Presented by: 90.7 WMFE Speaker Series
When: 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 10
Where: 90.7 WMFE, 11510 East Colonial Drive, Orlando
Admission: FREE but RSVP required RSVP now

When the first Martians arrive on the red planet, not much awaits them. There’s no food, no oxygen, no fuel. All they’ll have is what they brought with them — not much. That’s why researchers and engineers are developing the technology that will take what’s on Mars and turn it into much-needed food, water and life-saving oxygen.

Join 90.7 WMFE’s space reporter Brendan Byrne at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 10, for a lively discussion on the tech that will turn the lifeless planet into the next home for humans.


Joining Byrne on stage are:

At Kennedy Space Center, Veggie Project Manager Nicole Dufour instructs astronaut Peggy Whitson during the harvest of Chinese cabbage aboard the International Space Station.
Credits: NASA

Nicole Dufour, NASA, Project Manager, VEGGIE
Dufour oversees the VEGGIE experiment, a garden of vegetables on the International Space Station. Astronauts are growing lettuce and cabbage thanks to Dufour and her team, and they’re learning vital lessons in plant growth in microgravity.

Annie Meier, NASA, Chemical Engineer, Exploration Research & Technology Programs
Meier is transforming trash into vital gases like methane, oxygen and water. Her trash-to-gas technology can be used to recycle dinner scraps, wrappers and packaging (and even poo!) into gases that can be used for life support on long duration missions. Meier tested the tech on NASA’s HI-SEAS mission, a simulated 6-month stay on a Martian base-camp.

Dan Batcheldor, Florida Institute of Technology, Department Head, Physics & Space Science

The physics department at FIT is working with NASA to develop dirt that is similar to Martian regolith. The goal is to figure out how to grow crops at a Martian base camp. Researchers at FIT are also trying to grow plants in the Mars-simulant. Batcheldor is an advocate for science literacy, and wrote the book “Astronomy Saves the World: Securing our Future Through Exploration and Education.”

This FREE event is at 90.7 WMFE, 11510 E. Colonial Drive in Orlando. Please RSVP below.


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This event has reached maximum capacity. If you didn’t reserve a seat, host Brendan Byrne will be turning the talk into a Are We There Yet? Podcast later this week. Be sure to listen!

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