James “Joel” Knapper

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NASA Solar System Ambassador
Saturday May 25, 2019
1:00 – 2:00 P.M. Apollo
3:00 – 4:00 P.M. Mars

Apollo Program:
It was 50 years ago when man first stepped foot upon the Moon, fulfilling the challenge made by President John F Kennedy in 1961. Join NASA Solar System Ambassador James “Joel” Knapper for a trip back in time to revisit the men and machines of the Apollo Program, the first expedition to a new world.

Mars Exploration:
Sending astronauts to explore the solar system has been a topic of science fiction writers for over a century. Fifty years ago, mankind took the first small step in the exploration of another world when Neil Armstrong explored the surface of the Moon. Today, mankind is poised to venture further into deep space with the goal of exploring Mars. There are many technological challenges to travelling the 140 million miles to Mars; however, perhaps the largest obstacles to overcome are the biological challenges to the human body. NASA Solar System Ambassador James Joel Knapper will be presenting an overview of these biological hurdles as well as our current human Mars exploration plans.

A dedicated and active NASA Solar System Ambassador, James “Joel” Knapper has been hooked on NASA and space exploration since grade school. James earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in English Education from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. James is an officer of his local amateur astronomy group, the Kankakee Area Stargazers, where he presents monthly updates on NASA programs. He also hosts many other NASA events in the Chicago area. Joel lives in Bourbonnais, IL.