UH astronaut Love gives meteorite a lift

January 12th, 2009  |  by  |  Published in Research News

Astronaut Stanley Love with HIGP planetary scientist Klaus Keil

Astronaut Stanley Love with HIGP planetary scientist Klaus Keil

Before he was an astronaut, Stanley Love studied meteorites as a postdoctoral researcher in the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s Hawaiʻi Institute of Geophysics and Planetology.

He worked on the origin of chondrules (grains that are the oldest solid materials in the solar system) by lightning in the solar nebula. And he calculated that Earth is 200 times less likely to receive an impact meteorite broken off from Mercury than one from Mars.

So it was appropriate that Love carried a 470-million-year-old L group chondrite recovered in the Sahara desert in 2000 and classified by HIGP researchers with him on the STS-122 Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station in February 2008.

Love returned the meteorite to HIGP in October. He spoke about his space travels and showed movies of his space walks to assemble the space station.

He also spent time in informal discussion with graduate students interested in his take on gravitational tractors for towing asteroids, human exploration and utilization of asteroids, formation of impact-melted particles and other topics.

HIGP, it appears, has quite a few aspiring astronauts.

Tags: , , ,

Comments are closed.