USC Upstate Professor Accepted into Summer NASA Program

June 10, 2016 at 9:13 am

Dr. Edward Donovan, adjunct professor of biology and physical science at the University of South Carolina Upstate, has been accepted into NASA’s “Lunar Workshop for Educators” program being held June 27-July 1, 2016, at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland.

This workshop will focus on lunar science, exploration and how new data from current and recent lunar missions is growing and changing our understanding of the Moon. Participants will learn about the latest discoveries in lunar science from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) which has allowed scientists to measure the coldest known place in the Solar System, map the surface of the Moon in unprecedented detail and accuracy, find evidence of recent lunar geologic activity, as well as characterize the radiation environment around the Moon and its potential effect on future lunar explorers.

Donovan, a retired fifth- and sixth-grade science teacher from Spartanburg County School District Five, was trained in 1998 as a NASA Educator Workshop (NEW) educator at the NASA Langley Research Center in Langley, Va. Since then, he has been actively involved with NASA, the Mars Exploration Program, and now Earth’s moon studies and research, presenting science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) workshops and in-service programs at the district, state, regional and national levels.

In 2015, Donovan became an official NASA MAVEN Ambassador upon his completion of the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) program at the Goddard Space Flight Center. MAVEN is the space probe that arrived at Mars in 2014 to explore the planet’s upper atmosphere, ionosphere and interactions with the sun and solar wind. Data from MAVEN will provide insight into the planet’s atmospheric history, climate and planetary habitability.