Montana State University

Astronomy and Aerospace Day set for April 9 in Bozeman

March 29, 2017 -- From MSU News Service

The Milky Way galaxy as photographed over Hyalite Reservoir in the summer of 2016. Photo courtesy of Shane Mayer-Gawlik.

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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571

BOZEMAN – Astronomy and Aerospace Day, a free afternoon of astronomy- and aerospace-related events for kids and adults, will be held from 1-4 p.m. Sunday, April 9, at the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman. The event will include talks by the head of the Montana Space Grant Consortium and a former NASA engineer who now works on a self-driving car initiative. Both are alumni of Montana State University.
All Astronomy and Aerospace Day activities are included with admission to the museum. Kids under age 17 and students with a valid college ID have free admission that day.

Exhibits in the main lobby will feature activities and exhibits from the Extreme Gravity Institute, Helena’s ExplorationWorks and the Montana Department of Aviation, as well as other businesses, clubs and organizations. Kids' activities and planetarium shows will take place throughout the afternoon.
Angela Des Jardins, director of Montana Space Grant Consortium, will begin the afternoon presentations at 1 p.m. in the Hager Auditorium. Des Jardins will talk about the National Eclipse Ballooning Project, which will launch high-altitude balloons on Aug. 21, 2017, as the solar eclipse crosses North America. Des Jardins noted that never before has live video been streamed from near space during an eclipse.

At 3 p.m. Jaime Waydo, a 2000 graduate of the MSU College of Engineering who formerly worked on NASA’s Curiosity Rover that went to Mars, will discuss her current work on Waymo’s self-driving car program. The project uses technology developed in Google’s labs to reshape some of the ten trillion miles that motor vehicles travel around the world every year, with safer, more efficient and more accessible forms of transport.

Astronomy and Aerospace Day is sponsored by the Museum of the Rockies, Montana Space Grant Consortium, MSU Extended University, the Montana Learning Center at Canyon Ferry Lake and the Space Public Outreach Team.

For more information, visit

Contact: Suzi Taylor, MSU Extended University, (406) 994-7957,