Month: September 2016

Why Should Ed Dwight become and Honorary Astronaut?

A man whose resume reads: former Air Force Test Pilot, America’s First African American Astronaut Candidate, IBM Computer Systems Engineer, Aviation Consultant, Restauranteur, Real Estate Developer and Construction Entrepreneur can best be described as a true renaissance man. Ed Dwight has succeeded in all these varied careers. However, for the last 30+ years, Ed has focused his direction on fine art sculptures, large-scale memorials and public art projects. Since his art career began in 1978, after attaining his MFA in Sculpture from the University of Denver, Dwight has become one of the most prolific and insightful sculptors in America.


Air Force Pilot and America’s First Black Astronaut Cadidate

Born and raised in Kansas City, Kansas, Ed left his hometown in 1953 to join the U.S. Air Force. After completing pilot training, he served as a military fighter pilot and obtained a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from Arizona State University. In 1961 Dwight was chosen by President John F. Kennedy to enter training as an Experimental Test Pilot in preparation to become the first African American Astronaut candidate.  Ed completed the Experimental Test Pilot course and entered Aerospace Research Pilot training. He successfully completed the course and continued on to perform duties as a fully qualified Aerospace Research Pilot. Three years after the death of President Kennedy, Ed left the military and entered private life.

A New Beginning

After leaving the military in 1966, Ed took a position with the IBM Corporation as a Marketing Representative & Systems Engineer. After leaving IBM, Ed became an Aviation Consultant for a Dallas firm and performed pilot duties with Executive Aviation, an executive air charter service. This was followed by the development of a restaurant chain. In 1970, Ed founded Dwight Development Associates, Inc., a real estate land development and construction company, making him one of the larger real estate development entrepreneurs in Denver.

Black Frontier Spirit in the American West

Ed’s childhood dream was to become an artist, but was encouraged by his father to become an engineer. He received a B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from Arizona State University in 1957. With little formal art training, his first serious artistic endeavor began with a commission to create a sculpture of Colorado’s first Black Lt. Governor, George Brown in 1974. From this first artistic endeavor, he was commissioned by the Colorado Centennial Commission to create a series of bronzes entitled “Black Frontier in the American West.” The series depicted the contribution of African Americans to the opening of the West. Few facts were known about Black pioneers, explorers, trappers, farmers and soldiers. Through using his newly developed and unique artistic style, Ed opened the minds of viewers to this unknown history of the American West. The Series of 50 bronzes was on exhibit for several years throughout the U.S., gaining widespread acceptance and critical acclaim.

Jazz: An American Art Form      

After the success of his “Black Frontier Spirit Series” exhibit, at the behest of the National Park Service, at the St. Louis Arch Museum, Ed began to explore the most significant Black contribution to the culture of America: the history of Jazz in a sculptural form. He studied the African culture and the improvisational role the Africans contributed to the art form. This led to Ed’s study of his next major series of bronzes, “Jazz: An American Art Form”. This series depicts the evolution of jazz music from its roots in Africa to the contemporary superstars of the jazz era, and focuses on this style as a pure American musical idiom. Elements of the Jazz series are on display at major galleries and museums throughout the U.S. and Europe, and have received critical acceptance internationally. This series of over 70 bronzes features many works focusing on the African tribal contributions, then presents such great jazz performers as Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Charlie Parker, Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald and Benny Goodman.

Bob Barboza Speaking in Cabo Verde

Praia, 25 Apr (Inforpress) – “What human capital for development” is the theme of the Third Strategic Dialogue, an event promoted by Pedro Pires Institute for Leadership (IPP), scheduled to begin on 09 May in Praia.
The information was released today by the executive director of the institution, Indira Pires, during a press conference at which recalled that after 2014 and 2015 have done two simulators events, “Regional Integration in Africa” and “Innovation in Development Management” respectively this year brought the issue of development of human capital.
He explained that the choice of the theme “What human capital for development?”, Essentially aims to promote an open dialogue and participated with the presence of national and international experts and also with civil society.
The strategic dialogue will be open to the public why urges the public to make their registration through the Facebook page and the IPP site from Tuesday, taking into account what will happen in one of the hotels in the capital where space it is limited.
Indira Pires said that the meeting will be opened by the Prime Minister, Ulisses Correia e Silva, justifying this choice is due to the political moment that we live in the country.
Regarding the forum said to be divided into two panels. At first the theme “Education and development? As a potential virtuous circle” will be studied and speakers, economist Adrien Lorenceau, Djeneba Traore, Ricardo Paes de Barros and moderated the former Minister of Education Filomena Martins.
In the second panel “Towards a new generation of leaders: education and training” that will be the responsibility of speakers, Bob Barboza, Fred Swaniker, Jorge Dias and will be moderated by Victor Borges added.
He explained, however, that as in previous events there will be an informal discussion with the participation of the institution’s president, Pedro Pires, who is a moment that provides an open conversation with the guests this year are two, the former Minister of Finance and Planning Cristina Duarte and Milton Paiva, Secretary general of the Institute for Democracy and Development.
For international guests, said that this year will rely on people essentially sector, or are experts “less newsworthy” but that in his opinion, have a curriculum, visions and experiences that consider that they can be “important and of value”.
According to Indira Pires, this year joined the strategic dialogue to the main event that IPP is the first meeting of the IPP Trainers Annual, ie the leadership course taught by that institution, a meeting that according to said prior to the conference.
According to the source the meeting IPP Trainers Annual happens on May 13 will be opened as part of the morning to the public and the afternoon will be more restricted, with the protagonists graduates and former graduates of the leadership course taught from 2013 by IPP.
He added that issues such as, youth participation in politics, the issue of governance and follow-up of public policies and the need to ensure that there is continuity of certain public policies even in times of transition or administration of the country changes.
Inforpress / End

Wanted Raspberry Pi Projects for K-12 Education Worldwide

The Barboza Space Center:  is collecting Raspberry Pi projects to share with the Open Source Community.   Send us what you are working on an we will share the resources that we are working on.   If you need more information you can contact us at

450px-Raspberry_Pi_3_Model_B.pngThe Raspberry Pi is a series of credit card-sized single-board computers developed in the United Kingdom by the Raspberry Pi Foundation to promote the teaching of basic computer science in schools and developing countries.[3][4][5] The original Raspberry Pi and Raspberry Pi 2 are manufactured in several board configurations through licensed manufacturing agreements with Newark element14 (Premier Farnell), RS Components and Egoman.[6] The hardware is the same across all manufacturers. The firmware is closed-source.[7]

Several generations of Raspberry Pis have been released. The first generation (Pi 1) was released in February 2012 in basic model A and a higher specification model B. A+ and B+ models were released a year later. Raspberry Pi 2 model B was released in February 2015 and Raspberry Pi 3 model B in February 2016. These boards are priced between US$20 and 35. A cut down “compute” model was released in April 2014, and a Pi Zero with smaller size and limited input/output (I/O), general-purpose input/output (GPIO), abilities released in November 2015 for US$5.

All models feature a Broadcom system on a chip (SoC), which includes an ARM compatible central processing unit (CPU) and an on chip graphics processing unit (GPU, a VideoCore IV). CPU speed ranges from 700 MHz to 1.2 GHz for the Pi 3 and on board memory range from 256 MB to 1 GB RAM. Secure Digital SD cards are used to store the operating system and program memory in either the SDHC or MicroSDHC sizes. Most boards have between one and four USB slots, HDMI and composite video output, and a 3.5 mm phone jack for audio. Lower level output is provided by a number of GPIO pins which support common protocols like I²C. The B-models have an 8P8C Ethernet port and the Pi 3 has on board Wi-Fi 802.11n and Bluetooth.

The Foundation provides Raspbian, a Debian-based linux distribution for download, as well as third party UbuntuWindows 10 IOT CoreRISC OS, and specialised media center distributions.[8] It promotes Python and Scratch as the main programming language, with support for many other languages.[9]

In February 2016, the Raspberry Pi Foundation announced that they had sold eight million devices, making it the best-selling UK personal computer, ahead of the Amstrad PCW.[10][11] Sales reached ten million in September 2016.[12]

Mars Experts Meet in Washington, D.C.

There’s Still Time to Sign Up!  (Mars Society News)

Q&A with NatGeo MARS Series Executive Producer Justin Wilkes, Keynote Talk by Former NASA Ames Head Pete Worden and Live Skype Chat with Mars 160 Crew from MDRS as part of 2016 Mars Society Convention Banquet

As part of its 19th Annual International Mars Society Convention, the Mars Society will be hosting a special banquet on Saturday, September 24th from 7:00-11:00pm at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

Considered the highlight of the annual four-day Mars Society conference, the evening will involve a number of exciting and timely talks and presentations, including:

+ A Q&A session about National Geographic’s new MARS serieswith Executive Producer Justin Wilkes, President, RadicalMedia. Moderating the conversation will be veteran space journalist Leonard David.
+ A keynote banquet talk with Dr. S. Pete Worden, Former Director, NASA Ames Research Center,  & Chairman, Breakthrough Prize Foundation — The Breakthrough Initiatives: Life in the Universe.
+ A live update from the crew of the Mars 160 mission (via Skype) from the Mars Desert Research Station, just hours prior to beginning their 80-day simulation in Utah.
+ Remarks by Mars Society President & Founder Dr. Robert Zubrin.

There are still places available for the Saturday banquet. If you’re interested in attending, please register today by clicking here  or contact Carie Fay ( To learn more about the 2016 Mars Society convention, including registration details and the complete program itinerary, please visit our web site.

The Mars Society banquet promises to be a great night. Please join us this month in Washington, D.C.!

Kids Talk Radio Science News: Bob Barboza is scheduled to present “The Occupy Mars Learning Adventures” at the Mars Society Convention.  September 22, 2016.

Columbia Memorial Space Center History Lessons: Apollo Missions

Jr. Astronauts at the Barboza Space Center are studying space history as part of their training program.   We have spent the last four months at the Columbia Memorial Space Center learning as much as we can and uncover classic new documents.


Apollo Boilerplate-19 to ‘drop-in’ at Downey

Apollo Boilerplate-12 (BP-12) will not be alone at the new Columbia Memorial Space Science and Learning Center in Downey, California. Current plans show that when the center opens in 2008, the command module-shaped test capsule will be joined by another, Boilerplate-19 (BP-19), on exhibit in the center’s lobby. BP-19 was thought to be under the control of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles, according to A Field Guide to American Spacecraft.The two spacecraft will be dedicated to the legacy of all who worked at Downey to help America to be the first nation to allow mankind to walk on the Moon.

BP-19 was constructed in Downey, California by North American Aviation and accepted for use by NASA in 1963. It was used in parachute tests at Naval Air Station China Lake and was later configured as a Block II type vehicle. It has been on outside display in a gazebo for many years at the Apollo Park in Lancaster, CA. It is owned by the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, which has approved it moving to Downey. It is planned to be moved to its new home late this year.

BP-19. Credit: Rob Godwin, Apogee Books, used with permission

Thursday, April 12 will mark the groundbreaking of the new Columbia Memorial Space Science and Learning Center in Downey, CA at 4:30 p.m. The public is invited. The address is 12214 Lakewood Blvd., Downey, CA outside Downey Landing Studios.

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The Smithsonian Apollo test article is coming home on July 16, 2008.The City of Downey, with assistance from the Aerospace Legacy Foundation and Industrial Reality Group (who now own the historic NASA/NAA Apollo production site) will receive a second Apollo command module boilerplate by truck on July 16. It will, after restoration, be exhibited in the new Columbia Memorial Space Center, which when open this winter, will tell the story of the history of the site while preparing youth to take trips into space in the future.

The Apollo boilerplate is on loan from the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and will be trucked from Lancaster, CA.

The new Columbia Memorial Space Center and Aerospace Legacy offices will have limited access while we await the two spaceship test articles to be unloaded. Some veterans of Apollo and shuttle programs who worked at the site will be available for questions. Arrival time is expected within a three hour window between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

The two Apollo boilerplate test articles are from the earliest periods of America’s lunar exploration program.

Apollo Boilerplate #12, which is already on the site, was flown and recovered on the first Apollo test flight on May 13, 1964. Thereafter, it was used on at least two impact tests at Downey before being given to the local union hall until it was recovered by Downey last year.

Apollo Boilerplate #19 was carried aloft at least nine times and used in parachute drop tests over El Centro Naval Station before it was given by NASA to the Smithsonian. It has for many years been on display in Lancaster.

Can’t attend on July 16? The City of Downey will be having a program and ceremony at a later date where city officials will have both test articles open for public inspection before they are prepared for display.


NASA Needs Your Big Ideas

The Barboza Space Center is training Jr. astronauts, engineers and scientists in Long Beach, Santa Monica and Downey, California.   From time to time we receive notices about projects for college level students and we like to keep our readers informed.

NASA Searches for Big Idea from Students for In-Space Assembly of Spacecraft
by Staff Writers
Hampton VA (SPX) Sep 07, 2016

NASA’s Game Changing Development Program, managed by the agency’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, and the National Institute of Aerospace are seeking novel and robust concepts for in-space assembly of spacecraft – particularly tugs, propelled by solar electric propulsion, that transfer payloads from low earth orbit to a lunar distant retrograde orbit. Image courtesy Analytical Mechanics Associates. For a larger version of this image please go here.

In the 2017 Breakthrough, Innovative, and Game-changing (BIG) Idea Challenge, NASA is engaging university-level students in its quest to reduce the cost of deep space exploration. NASA’s Game Changing Development Program (GCD), managed by the agency’s Space Technology Mission Directorate, and the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA) are seeking novel and robust concepts for in-space assembly of spacecraft – particularly tugs, propelled by solar electric propulsion (SEP), that transfer payloads from low earth orbit (LEO) to a lunar distant retrograde orbit (LDRO).

“GCD initiated the BIG Idea Challenge in 2016 as a unique approach to finding top talent for NASA, and it proved to be more successful than we had hoped,” said Mary E. Wusk, acting GCD program manager at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia.

“In last year’s challenge, students from across the nation proposed innovative solutions to the technology challenge of controlling a heat shield upon reentry, Wusk said.

“The 2016 BIG Idea Challenge finalists are now interning at NASA Langley where they are building prototypes of their designs under the mentorship of experts in the field. These students bring new ideas, new perspectives, new tools and unlimited energy to solving real world challenges that NASA is working on. It is a win-win for NASA and the students. I am excited to kick off our second Challenge which will address our ability to make in-space assembly a reality.”

Why is this important? Think: ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.’ Combined with advances in robotic technology, SEP tugs (i.e., transportation systems) enable NASA to move toward the use of more modular space systems that can be assembled into functional space craft hundreds of thousands of miles from Earth. The modular design also allows for upgrades, replacement of components, and reconfigurations for new mission application.

The 2017 BIG Idea Challenge invites teams and their faculty advisors to work together to design and analyze potential modular concepts and systems that provide the ability to construct large SEP tugs in space. Concepts can employ:

+ New approaches for packaging modules in one or more launch vehicles that minimize launch loads

+ Modular solar arrays and ion engines

+ Robust robotic assembly of the modules that form the SEP tug.

Interested teams of three to five undergraduate and/or graduate students are asked to submit robust proposals describing their concepts by Nov. 30.

From these proposals, a panel of NASA experts will select four teams to move to the next phase of the competition. Teams will then have to submit full technical papers on their concepts and present their concepts in face-to-face oral presentations/design reviews at the BIG Idea Forum at NASA Langley in mid-February 2017.

Each finalist team will receive a $6,000 stipend to facilitate full participation in the forum. BIG Idea Challenge winners will receive offers of paid internships with the GCD team at NASA Langley, where they can further develop their concept.