Astrobiology (general): June 2010

Workshop Dates: October 11-13, 2010

NAI, together with the Agouron Institute and the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, are again sponsoring a field workshop of the Early Earth Focus Group following upon the very successful BAR (Biosignatures in Ancient Rocks) workshop of 2007. The topic of this workshop is Anoxygenic Phototrophic Ecosystems (APE): Ancient and Modern. This workshop will bring together approximately 40 microbial ecologists, astro- and geobiologists; including ~10 senior scientists who have made significant contributions to our understanding of modern and ancient anaerobic ecosystems and of the chemistry of ancient oceans, ~15 early career researchers (assistant professors and postdocs) who have been actively conducting forefront research, and ~15 future leaders (current graduate students) in this field. The workshop is scheduled for Oct. 11-13 in Fayetteville, New York, at the scenic and biogeochemically stratified Green Lake. Travel awards are available. Please contact Linda Altamura (Penn State Astrobiology Research Center: for further information.

For more information about the Early Earth Focus Group, visit: [Source: NAI Newsletter]

David Morrison has joined the SETI Institute staff as the Director of the Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe. Appropriately, Carl Sagan's first doctoral student, Dr. Morrison is now in a unique position to revisit his original roots and succeed legendary SETI pioneer and mentor Frank Drake, who is retiring and now joins the SETI Institute Board of Directors.

Dr. Morrison is a leading space scientist and science manager. In addition to his new job at the SETI Institute, he retains (part time) his previous position at NASA Ames Research Center, where he is Director of the NASA Lunar Science Institute and Senior Scientist for Astrobiology. Previously, Morrison served as Director of Space at NASA Ames, and before that as Professor and Vice-Chancellor for Research at the University of Hawaii. Dr. Morrison is internationally known for his research on small bodies in the solar system, and he has published more than 155 technical papers and a dozen books, including five university-level textbooks. [Source: NAI Newsletter]