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Saturday, June 29, 2019 from 9:10 AM to 4:00 PM PDT
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09:10AM-09:30AM Check-in, Networking
09:30AM-12:30PM Planetary Defense Sessions
12:30PM-01:30PM Lunch Break
01:30PM-04:00PM Asteroid Exploration Sessions


Palos Verdes Peninsula Center Library
Community / Meeting Room, 3rd Floor
701 Silver Spur Road
Rolling Hills Estates, CA 90274

(Please see the additional maps at the bottom of this page.)
(South of PCH 1 Hwy, South of 405 Hwy, West of 110 Hwy)

Driving Directions

Parking is located on the roof of the Peninsula Center Library (accessed from Deep Valley Drive) and the second floor garage (limited) for underground parking (accessed from Silver Spur Road).

(Main Entrance on Silver Spur Road)

(Roof Parking Entrance from Deep Valley Drive)
Parking is located on the roof of the Peninsula Center Library (accessed from Deep Valley Drive) and the second floor garage (limited) for underground parking (accessed from Silver Spur Road).Parking

Parking is located on the roof of the Peninsula Center Library (accessed from Deep Valley Drive) and the second floor garage (limited) for underground parking (accessed from Silver Spur Road).Parking
Parking is located on the roof of the Peninsula Center Library (accessed from Deep Valley Drive) and the second floor garage (limited) for underground parking (accessed from Silver Spur Road).Parking
Parking is located on the roof of the Peninsula Center Library (accessed from Deep Valley Drive) and the second floor garage (limited) for underground parking (accessed from Silver Spur Road).


Events / Program Chair, LA
American Institute of Aeronautics & Astronautics, Los Angeles - Las Vegas Section

2019 Planetary Defense and Asteroid Exploration (PDAE) mini-Conference

An AIAA LA-LV Section mini-Conference
(A free event. Please RSVP. Coffee / bottled water will be provided.)
(Lunch / Snacks will NOT be provided.)

Register Now!                                           (Please enable the Javascript on your Web Browser)


Planetary Defense (Morning) Sessions

Dr. William H. Ailor (The Aerospace Corporation)
"Overview and Summary of the 2019 IAA Planetary Defense Conference"

Dr. Paul W. Chodas (Director, Center for Near Earth Object Studies, NASA JPL)
"Introduction of the PDC Scenario"
"How the scenario evolved and concluded"

Dr. Davide Farnocchia (Solar System Dynamics Group, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory)
"Orbit determination and impact hazard assessment for near-Earth objects"

Philip Groves ("Asteroid Impact" IMAX Producer & Writer, Apophis Pictures, LLC)
"Fostering public support for planetary defense through media"

Dr. Nahum Melamed (The Aerospace Corporation)
"Introduction and NEOs Deflection App brief demo"
(No workshop this time due to the time constraints)

Prof. Madhu Thangavelu (USC)
"Evolving A Planetary Defense Capability through Orbital Debris Mitigation"
"Establishing An Earth-Moon Planetary Defense Architecture"

Qicheng Zhang (Caltech Div. Geological and Planetary Sciences)
"Directed Energy Methods for Planetary Defense" (Based on the work at UCSB led by Prof. Philip Lubin)

Asteroid Exploration (Afternoon) Sessions

Dr. Niraj K. Inamdar (Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems)
"Visitors from Our Solar and Galactic Neighborhood:Oumuamua and the Possibility of Visits by Rocks from Exoplanetary Systems'"

Eric Mahr (The Aerospace Corporation)
"OSIRIS-REx Sample Return Mission Overview"

James Soroka (Law Offices of J W Soroka)

"Space Laws and Legal Aspects of Planetary Defense and Asteroid Exploration"

2019 AIAA LA-LV Planetary Defense and Asteroid Exploration mini-Conference

It is the International Asteroid Day again! In previous years, the AIAA LA-LV Section has held the Planetary Defense and Asteorid Exploration (PDAE) mini-Conference, supported the Near Earth Objects (NEOs) Deflection App Hands-on Workshop, or supported solo presentations on this special date. This year on June 29 in this PDAE mini-conference, we will discuss the various aspects of Planetary Defense and Asteroid Exploration to bring more public attention to this important subject. The recent exciting news about discovery of the first interstellar "asteroid", and the OSIRIS-REx and JAXA's Hayabusa2 missions will also be discussed. The legal aspects / space laws will be discussed.

More and more of these objects are being discovered and monitored daily, dramatically updating our view of the solar system in this regard thanks to dedicated efforts by planetary scientists, engineers, and support from the society.
This mini-conference will introduce the NEO (and other possible) threats, covering past events, real-time close approaches and Earth impact risk, NEO discovery, tracking, and mitigation concepts. Recent advances, progress, and updates in the related efforts, including the NEO Deflection App, various approaches and issues for Planetary Defense (for instance, once built and deployed, how to keep the very complex system of Planetary defense radars, controls, intercepters, and etc. working forever with constant but timely technology updates, and the directed energy approaches), and Asteroid Exploration (mining and economics etc.), will be discussed. This important subject not only has great impact on the Aerospace community, but also the survival, civilization, prosperity, sustainment, and continuation of Humanity.
Please join us and bring your questions or suggestions to participate in this important and interesting event.

Speaker Biography

Dr. William H. Ailor, Ph.D. (The Aerospace Corporation)

Dr. Ailor is a Technical Fellow with the Center for Orbital and Reentry Debris Studies at The Aerospace Corporation in El Segundo, California. He has chaired eleven international conferences, including seven on protecting Earth from asteroids, and served on the United Nations subcommittee that developed protocols for international cooperation in the event a threatening asteroid or comet is discovered.   He testified to Congress and was featured on NBC Nightly News, CBS Evening News, ABC News, and CNN as an expert on the Leonid meteor storm’s possible effects on satellites during the period of the storm.  He is also known for his expertise in space debris and reentry breakup, and has appeared on CNN, the Discovery Channel, and the Learning Channel on these topics.  He testified to the Columbia Accident Investigation Board on what might be learned from debris recovered after that event.  He provided expert commentary during the reentry of the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite (UARS) in 2011.  In his private life, Dr. Ailor founded the Palos Verdes Peninsula Land Conservancy in 1988 and served as its president for 18 years. During that time, the rganization preserved over 1000 acres of natural open space on the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

Dr. Paul W. Chodas (Director, Center for Near Earth Object Studies, NASA JPL)

Dr. Davide Farnocchia (Solar System Dynamics Group, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory)

Dr. Davide Farnocchia is a member of the Solar System Dynamics Group at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.He works at the trajectory estimation and impact hazard assessment of asteroids and comets, and he is a member of the science team of the OSIRIS-REx mission to asteroid Bennu.Before joining JPL, Davide earned his PhD degree, as well as BS and MS degrees, in Mathematics at the University of Pisa, Italy.

Philip Groves ("Asteroid Impact" IMAX Producer & Writer, Apophis Pictures, LLC)

Phil Groves is the writer and producer of the IMAX documentary Asteroid Impact.  Prior to becoming a film producer, he was the EVP of Worldwide Distribution for IMAX Corporation.

During Groves' tenure at IMAX, he successfully brought IMAX’s slate of Hollywood blockbuster event films to IMAX screens around the world, beginning with the very first day and date release of an IMAX DMR title, Matrix Revolutions.  In 2016, he was honored with the CinemaCon Passepartout Award for his “dedication and commitment to the international marketplace.”  Additionally, he increased the reach of IMAX documentaries to more multiplex and institutional IMAX screens worldwide.

Before IMAX, Groves was Vice President of Film for Loews Cineplex, spending over 20 years buying film for this national exhibition chain as well as Cineplex Odeon, and General Cinema.

Prior to his executive film career, Groves earned screenwriting credits and storyboarded a number of films including the comedy classic Airplane!; he also created on-screen graphics for the television program Wall Street Journal Consumer Newsline, and published comic books which he authored and illustrated.
Groves and his wife, Carol, have one daughter, Casey, and currently live in Thousand Oaks, CA 

Dr. Niraj K. Inamdar (Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems)

Dr. Niraj Inamdar is a Senior Principal Systems Engineer at Raytheon. Over the past decade, Dr. Inamdar has worked in fields as varied as exoplanetary science and planet formation theory; X-ray spectroscopy; mechanical design and analysis; spacecraft attitude dynamics and control; and bioengineering and microfluidics. Before joining Raytheon, he was a physical scientist at RAND Corporation, where his work focused on technical challenges related to national security and defense. Prior to that, he was a space systems architect at The Aerospace Corporation, while as a graduate student, he was an engineer and Science Lead on the Regolith X-ray Imaging Spectrometer (REXIS) instrument flying on NASA's OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission. He received his doctorate from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in planetary sciences in 2016, his master's degree from MIT in mechanical engineering in 2011, and his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 2008.

Eric Mahr (The Aerospace Corporation)

Eric Mahr is a Senior Engineering Specialist in the Space Architecture Department at The Aerospace Corporation (Aerospace).  He has experience in spacecraft and architecture concept development, proposal evaluation and mission assessment, spacecraft and subsystem design tool development, and proposal development.  He has performed varied tasks including spacecraft design, technical assessment, cost and schedule analysis, requirements definition, launch vehicle selection, and technology insertion.   His has provided support to numerous and various Air Force, NASA, and commercial customers.

Dr. Nahum Melamed (The Aerospace Corporation)

Dr. Nahum Melamed is a project leader at The Aerospace Corporation since 2003. He received BS and MS in Aerospace Engineering from the Technion, Israel, and PhD in Aerospace Engineering from Georgia Tech. His expertise include Orbital Mechanics and Optimal Guidance. His key activities include Planetary Defense from Near Earth Objects, Space Debris Mitigation and Flight SW Validation.

He leads a collaboration with NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) developing a physics based web NEO Deflection App, or NDA, to design NEO deflection missions and gain insights on the challenges involved. This  includes descriptions and tutorials that are necessary to interpret the data, supports planetary defense conferences, workshops and exercises, and is available online Dr. Melamed serves on planetary defense conferences and planetary defense exercises organizing committees, gives talks at these venues, and instructs a planetary defense class at Aerospace.

James W. Soroka (Law Offices of J W Soroka)


Prof. Madhu Thangevelu (USC)

Madhu Thangavelu, MSc is space projects director of the Cal-Earth Institute and a fellow at NASA’s Institute of Advanced Concepts. He is an advisory board member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics with a focus on the design of complex space projects, including space stations and exploratory missions. He also teaches at the University of Southern California. Madhu’s educational background is in Architecture (Masters in Building Science, USC School of Architecture) and in Engineering (Bachelors in Science and Engineering, India). Versions of Madhu’s masters thesis (conceived during ISU ‘88 at MIT) entitled “MALEO: Modular Assembly in Low Earth Orbit. An Alternate Strategy for Lunar Base Establishment” were published in several journals worldwide.  He is a creative consultant to the aerospace industry in the newly evolving field of space architectures complex concept synthesis. His concepts have been reviewed and appreciated by NASA, the National Research Council, the National Space Council, and his work has been presented before the National Academy of Sciences. Madhu is on the visiting faculty of the International Space University (ISU) and lectures to Space System Architecture students at ISU and at USC. He continues to present and publish original concepts in Space System Architectures and chairs related sessions at conferences. He is a coauthor of the book The Moon: Resources, Future Development and Colonization and is Vice Chairman for Education, Los Angeles Section of the American Institute Of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).

Qicheng Zhang (Caltech Div. Geological and Planetary Sciences)

Qicheng Zhang is a Ph.D. student in the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences at Caltech, where he studies difficult-to-observe populations of small bodies in the solar system, from sungrazing comets to trans-Neptunian and interstellar objects. He has additionally been involved with the ongoing planetary defense efforts at UCSB. He received a B.S. degree in physics from UCSB and an M.S. degree in planetary science from Caltech.