Exclusive: Full Space Expo Programming Schedule at Long Beach Comic Con 2016

Friday, 19 August 2016 - 11:19AM
Science of Sci-Fi
Friday, 19 August 2016 - 11:19AM
Exclusive: Full Space Expo Programming Schedule at Long Beach Comic Con 2016
< >
Long Beach Comic Con is coming up next month, which means that the science-minded Space Expo is making a comeback. While all Comic Cons are increasing their focus on STEM and science of sci-fi panels, Long Beach is ahead of the curve, and we have the exclusive on the full schedule of science programming at the con.

Space Expo

Space Expo

The highlights among the panels include a discussion on the ways space-bound films (presumably including movies like Star Trek and The Martian) have impacted real-life space exploration, a women in STEM panel, and NASA engineers discussing the future of the Cassini and Dawn missions (and whether we could find a Hoth-like planet in the asteroid belt). NASA scientists will also be on hand to debate our chances at finding alien life and reveal the status of current and future Mars missions.

Space Expo

The programming is all part of the Space Expo, a STEM-focused programming slate and exhibit which began at Long Beach Comic Con last year and is organized by the Columbia Memorial Space Center. LBCC 2016, which will also feature panels from Marvel, DC Comics, a cosplay competition, and more, will run from September 17-18 at the Long Beach Convention Center.

Here is the full Space Expo schedule:

Opening quote


NASA's Dawn Mission: The Asteroids Awaken
Moderator: Keri Bean 
Saturday, 10:30am-11:30am
What do TIE fighters and Dawn have in common? Is there a Hoth-like planet hidden in the main asteroid belt? Find out the answers to these questions and learn more about the Dawn spacecraft, which has been orbiting the dwarf planet Ceres since March 2015. In this talk, follow along with Dawn's journey through time to explore some of the largest objects in the main asteroid belt and learn about the engineering behind the mission and the science that's come out of it.
Panelists: The Disk O' Inferno, Splatter, Lock-Jaw, Invader, Escape Velocity, Bad Kitty, SawBlaze
Saturday, 11:30am-12:30pm
In its 7th Season, this competition show features robots competing to take each other down in a series of rounds. This can't-miss panel features members from three teams that have competed during past seasons, and they are making themselves (and their robots!) available to answer your questions about what it's like to compete on the show, how they got into it, and the skills it takes to build your own robot that qualifies.  Featuring The Disk O' Inferno, Splatter, Lock-Jaw, Invader, Escape Velocity, Bad Kitty, and SawBlaze!
Martians at Work
Panelists: Priscilla Parrish, Ashley Stroupe, Nagin Cox, Kim Steadman
Saturday, 12:30pm-1:30pm
Engineers from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory discuss what it's like working on spacecraft that are orbiting Mars or roving across the red planet.
Fascinating Fights - The Live Interactive Show
Panelists: Dr. Michael Dennin, Dr. Anita Sengupta, Matt Munson, Siike Donnelly
Moderator: Daniel J. Glenn
Saturday, 2:30pm-3:30pm
The live version of the ESPN style panel show where a group of experts academically discusses who would win in a fight between two superheroes or pop culture icons. 
Virgin Galactic: LauncherOne
Panelists: A.C. Charania, Scott Macklin, Hannah McCallum, Matt Wierman 
Saturday, 3:30pm-4:30pm
Small, affordable satellites are revolutionizing the way we explore space and study our home planet-but only if they can find an affordable, reliable way to launch into orbit. Virgin Galactic is developing LauncherOne, a new dedicated small-satellite launch vehicle. In design and construction in Long Beach, LauncherOne will be air-launched from a 747 and deliver satellites for space-based worldwide Internet, Earth observation, and asteroid hunting. LauncherOne is a 21st century rocket, taking advantage of new developments in 3D printing and composites. On this panel, hear directly from some of the rocket scientists and space salespeople who are making the small satellite revolution happen.
Exoplanets: Finding Life in the Galaxy
Panelists: Dr. Rob Zellem
Saturday, 4:30pm-5:30pm
How do we find life elsewhere in the universe?  We can study exoplanets to find home worlds of other lifeforms.  One way scientists do this is by observing exoplanets as they transit across their star, providing us with many details about what the planet may be like.  Join us as one of those very scientists from JPL shows us how exactly we may eventually find an alien world that can harbor life.
Women in STEM
Panelists: Trina Ray, Kim Steadman, Keri Bean, and Hannah McCallum
Saturday, 5:30pm-6:30pm
More than ever, women have a bigger presence in STEM than ever before! Join JPL and Virgin Galactic's Trina Ray, Kim Steadman, Keri Bean, and Hannah McCallum as they discuss their careers and what roles they play in the ever-changing landscape of space exploration! 
Cassini Mission to Saturn 
Panelists: Trina Ray and Scott Edgington
Saturday 6:30pm-7:30pm
Cassini-Huygens Mission to Saturn. The 23-foot tall, 14-foot wide, 6-ton spacecraft Cassini is the largest most sophisticated outer planet spacecraft ever built, and is currently orbiting Saturn.  Cassini has been returning fabulous data about the entire Saturn system: the spectacular rings; the numerous icy satellites (moons); the giant planet itself; a huge magnetosphere; and the intriguing moon Titan, which is slightly larger than the planet Mercury, and whose hazy atmosphere is denser than that of Earth.  Come learn about the recent science results and the exciting end of mission adventure planned for next September. 


So You Want to Build an R2?
Panelist: Jeff McGee
Moderator: Keri Bean
Sunday, 10:30am-11:30am
Did you know there's a whole club of people dedicated to building R2-D2 and the other droids of Star Wars? Come learn the basics and see what it takes to build your own Astromech droid from folks that are building their own!
The Intersection of Art and Science (and Engaging the Public)
Panelists: Joby Harris, Dave Crosland, Juan Gedeon
Sunday, 12:30pm-1:30pm
There is no better place to watch the intersection of science and art than in comic books...and at NASA! Joby Harris, the artist responsible for JPL's interplanetary travel art and comic artists Juan Gedeon (Horizon), Livio Ramondelli (Transformers) and Dave Crosland (Invader Zim) get together to discuss how the artwork done for NASA has comic influences, and how space exploration (an integral part of comic books throughout history) and technology has been a big influence in the artwork that's been done for comics.
That Might Be Cool 
Panelists: SpaceX Engineer, Author and Game Designer Andrew Rader, Cosplayer and Mental Health Advocate Karina KPM Cosplay, Comic Book Writer Ray Anthony Height 
Moderator: Jason Hammons (TMBC podcast) 
Sunday, 1:30pm-2:30pm
Optimism is something that's been largely missing from geek culture as superheroes, video games, and nearly all things geek have stepped out of the basement and into the limelight. ThatMightBeCool panel is here because there's no reason geeks can't be optimistic and happy about the fact that the things they're passionate about are so clearly prevalent in today's society. Let's talk about what might be cool with SpaceX Engineer, Author and Game Designer Andrew Rader, Cosplayer and Mental Health Advocate Karina KPM Cosplay, and Comic Book Writer Ray Anthony Height.
Film's Impact on Space Exploration
Moderator: John Palmer
Sunday, 4:00pm-5:00pm
This panel presentation, narrated by John Palmer with 30 years in the film industry, uses 20 film clips to explore the impact that film has had on the exploration of space (1902-2016 and beyond).
Closing quote

Tickets for Long Beach Comic Con are now available, starting at just $30 for adults while kids under 10 get in for free. Visit https://www.showclix.com/event/long-beach-comic-con to for all ticketing information.

Space Expo
Science News
Science of Sci-Fi