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SPACE JUNK: Earth's mechanical graveyard

*NEW: Check out our trip to see "Hidden Figures", about the brilliant African-American women mathematicians at NASA in the '60s, on Jan. 10th!*

We're delighted to host UW postdoctoral fellow Lisa Ruth Rand, who will be giving a presentation on "space junk":

"What is space junk, and who defines waste in an environment seemingly devoid of nature as we know it? In examining space artifacts as they move through and return from the planetary borderlands, Rand explores this extreme environment as a site of contested scientific moral authority, shifting values of consumption, and Space Age spatial politics. The history of space junk provides valuable, unprecedented context for an international space policy community considering how to safeguard humanity's future in our increasingly crowded cosmic neighborhood."

Where: A big thanks to Ten Forward Consulting and Madworks Coworking for hosting us in their recently renovated space; there's ample parking, and the entrance is accessible (there's also an elevator). Multiple bus lines stop within a few blocks. The main entrance is right off Rosa Road. 

When: Thursday, Dec. 1. We'll have socializing/networking from 7 to 7:30 pm (feel free to arrive anytime within that half hour); Lisa's presentation will start at 7:30pm. We'll have snacks and wine courtesy of Ten Forward Consulting, and Madworks will provide coffee, tea and water.

About Lisa:

Dr. Lisa Ruth Rand earned her PhD from the Department of History and Sociology of Science at the University of Pennsylvania in 2016. Her research plumbs the intersections of the histories of science, technology, and the environment during the Cold War, with a focus on mobile waste and contingent constructions of nature and sustainability. 

In addition to the environmental history of outer space, she has also written about gender in American aerospace culture and performances of scientific practice at Earth analog habitats. 

Rand's research has been supported by fellowships from NASA, the Society for the History of Technology, the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, the Penn Humanities Forum, and the Consortium for the History of Science, Technology, and Medicine. 

She is a Research Associate in the Department of Space History at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, an Adjunct Research Associate at the RAND Corporation, and a volunteer urban astronomy educator. Find out more at

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  • Kellyn B.

    Awesome! Super informative. I'm really glad I went.

    2 · 5 days ago

  • Catherine G.

    This talk was GREAT. I love everything about space and was thrilled to hear a presentation like this; Dr. Rand was fantastic and approachable, I felt like I could ask any question I wanted. The space was perfect and comfortable, the technology worked, the members were friendly as always, and the wine was delicious. :)

    1 · 5 days ago

  • Catherine G.

    If anyone wants to see how amazing this talk was, watch the recording here:

    1 · 5 days ago

  • Hilary S.

    Dr. Rand's talk was FASCINATING. She gave an engaging presentation, and I learned a lot about the politics/environmental history of space. (Thanks to Sara for coming to the rescue with a wine opener!)

    1 · 6 days ago

    • Catherine G.

      I agree! I can't wait for her next talk.

      5 days ago

  • Ashley P.

    The address for Madworks coworking has been updated- it's actually at 505 S. Rosa Road.

    6 days ago

  • Ashley P.


    2 · November 21

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