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LIGO-G040249-00-W "Colliding Black Holes" Credit: National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) Informal Education & Lifelong Learning Fred Raab,

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Presentation on theme: "LIGO-G040249-00-W "Colliding Black Holes" Credit: National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) Informal Education & Lifelong Learning Fred Raab,"— Presentation transcript:

1 LIGO-G W "Colliding Black Holes" Credit: National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) Informal Education & Lifelong Learning Fred Raab, LIGO Hanford Observatory

2 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning2 National Science Foundation: America’s investment in the future… NSF’s charge is to build the science & technology base for the next century LIGO is on the forefront of international science »detection of 1 st traveling space warps from black holes and other exotic objects will be a signature event in science, comparable to the invention of the telescope, the microscope, or the dawn of flight LIGO aims to be on the forefront of education »this science is so exciting, it must be shared with the public »start with our local communities in the Northwest and in the Gulf states, where observatories are located

3 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning3 Why are informal ed & lifelong learning important to a community? Informal ed is learning outside traditional classrooms Most people are not in classrooms Income generation & quality of life benefits Human capital: lifelong learning will be increasingly important; typical person entering work force today will change careers several times before retirement  We should strive to foster lifelong learning skills at a early age, and nurture them throughout the formal ed years, into adulthood and on to retirement.

4 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning4 Marketing: what does the customer need? LIGO Hanford Observatory’s Local Educator Network Top request: Get our youth excited enough by the science to put the GameBoy down and yearn to learn; bring Mom & Dad too!

5 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning5 Top priority activities recommended by LEN Bring public out to “touch and see” science in the making Help our schools with teacher training, internships and school tours Help us integrate science research into science teaching Help the public to value the richness of science

6 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning6 LIGO Public Outreach Last Year LIGO Hanford Observatory had 3000 visitors in 2003, for tours, star parties, workshops and other programs. LIGO Livingston Observatory had comparable number of visitors, but mostly teacher workshops and school visits.

7 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning7 LIGO Hanford Observatory Outreach Products Public Tours Workshops Star Parties Public Lectures Exhibits International Media Relations »US News, All Things Considered, Asahi Shimbun, BBC Radio, etc. LIGO Video School tours Teacher Workshops Web resources for teachers Research-based teaching for High Schools Internships for teachers Internships for students Jobs for aspiring scientists and engineers

8 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning8 Multiplying efforts with strong partners… NSF is awarding $5,000,000 to establish a LIGO Science Center in Livingston, LA »Capitalizes on strong school interest in LIGO in Louisiana and strong partner institutions »School of education at Southern will integrate LIGO Science Center into its pre-service and in-service teacher training program »Exploratorium -- nation’s premier designer of exhibit-based science teaching -- will supply exhibits and teacher training »Board of Regents will ensure state-wide visitation by schools, with emphasis on teachers and schools with greatest needs

9 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning9 Could our community foster a regional science center for inland NW? Potential partners: »WSU-TC, through MESA and Department of Teaching & Learning – tight connections to K-12 system, students & parents »Columbia River Exhibition of History, Science & Technology (CREHST) – regional history and K-6 science programs »Alliance for the Advancement of Science Through Astronomy (AASTA) – awesome observatory atop Rattlesnake Mountain for eventual remote control »B-Reactor Museum Association (BRMA) – first production nuclear reactor and the people who built it

10 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning10 Columbia River Exhibition of History, Science & Technology l During the school year ~ 36,000 students participated in CREHST sponsored programs l During Smithsonian exhibit, March 20 – April 30, 1,500 students visited the museum in school tours l volunteers have years of Hanford technical experience l one of 20 museums in the nation selected to participate in the Franklin Institutes’ Nano Science program l awarded a National Science Foundation career exploration program in partnership with the Chabot Space and Science Center and the American Museum of Science and Energy

11 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning11 Alliance for the Advancement of Science Through Astronomy Tax-exempt charitable organization founded in 1996 Dedicated to renovation of Rattlesnake Mountain Observatory (RMO) for hands-on education, training, research, & outreach »largest telescope in Washington State inside a 24-foot dome »installed in 1971, owned by Battelle Memorial Institute, Columbus, Ohio Short term goal accomplished -- reactivating observatory and performing refurbishments to allow onsite control and use Second (more challenging) goal -- remote access to telescope via Internet and automation without personnel in observatory

12 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning12 B Reactor Museum Association l Hanford’s B Reactor is unique and nationally recognized for its special role in world history Construction & operation during Manhattan Project was an incredible scientific and engineering feat l B Reactor building has been preserved in near-original condition l BRMA organized in 1991 as a non-profit corporation to preserve B Reactor as a public-access historical museum representing the entire Hanford Site B Reactor Museum concept complements the development of visitor facilities that now is under way for the Hanford Reach National Monument

13 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning13 In summary… Informal education & lifelong learning enrich a community in many ways LIGO is dedicated to informal ed and interested in forming partnerships to advance goals Tri-Cities is fortunate to be immensely rich in science education resources if we can grow what we have The better our community exploits current resources, the more likely we can attract new resources

14 LIGO-G W Raab: Informal Education & Lifelong Learning14 Can LIGO’s science and education missions leverage 4-yr college effort? LIGO-related faculty in WA »Sukanta Bose, WSU, Pullman LIGO-related faculty in LA »Joseph Giaime, LSU »Gabriela Gonzalez, LSU »Warren Johnson, LSU »Jorge Pullin, LSU »Joel Tohline, LSU »Ed Seidel, LSU »Stephen McGuire, Southern U. »Sanichiro Yoshida, SLU »John Whelan, Loyola »Natalia Zotov, LA Tech Washington higher education has not yet fully exploited LIGO’s presence. Why not in our backyard?


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