An idealized nanoprobe approaches a single-celled organism in the depth of space.

Star Stuff

Most of these images are the result of my summer 2002 work as a NASA Faculty Fellow at Marshall Spaceflight Center (MSFC) in Huntsville, Alabama. My project was to create metaphoric multi-layered drawings for concepts developed during a meeting titled The In-Space Manufacturing of Space Transportation Infrastructure Workshop. The process of doing the drawings included researching existing NASA CAD-CAM constructions and engineering drawings and doing web searches for metaphoric material. Ideas would evolve as I met with Ann Neighbors Trausch, the organizer of the workshop. My project was to visualize concepts of individual sections of the workshop.

The ultimate goal of manufacturing in space is to achieve the Stepping Stones that would result in the abiltity to Go anywhere, anytime. In one discussion, Ann spoke of the concept of folding and unfolding. My subsequent web-search yielded a representation of the cross-section of the DNA molecule. The resulting piece illuminates Carl Sagan's idea that We are Star-Stuff reaching for the Stars.

My special thanks to Ann Neighbors Trausch for our on-going dialog on the hopeful evolution of humankind. My thanks as well to David Harris who suggested using NASA CAD-CAM images with the metaphoric drawings, and Jack Hood who helped me navigate through software challenges. Finally, I am grateful to Les Johnson, manager of In-Space Propulsion Research of NASA MSFC who provided me with the opportunity to work in a community where visionary ideas are common currency in a place fondly known as, Rocket City.

 

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