NSI Announces Keynote Speaker from NASA for 2020 Technical Symposium

NDT Industry News, Updates and Announcements


North Star Imaging is proud to announce Dr. James B. Garvin, Chief Scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, as one of two keynote speakers at NSI’s 2020 X-ray Vision Conference.

For the past 35+ years Dr. Garvin has served NASA as a senior scientist in various capacities, as well as a member of the MSL/Curiosity Mars Rover and Mars Insight Lander science teams. He has also been serving NASA Headquarters as a special science advisor for Mars to the Mars Program Director. In his present capacity, he is helping to plan NASA’s continuing Mars exploration program, catalyze new missions to Venus, the Moon, and Earth, orchestrate innovative scientific research, and to help integrate human and robotic exploration at the Moon.

Dr. Garvin’s presentation, “Exploring Space in 3D: New Scientific Frontiers on the Moon and Mars as Humanity Reaches for the Stars”, will be a welcome addition to the lineup of professional speakers at the NSI 2020 Technical Symposium.


Dr. Garvin shares why Computed Tomography plays an important role in his work. “As chief scientist for NASA’s flagship science center (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center) and an advocate for NASA’s overarching exploration and science priorities, including a return to the Moon and onto Mars, I am passionate about the three-dimensional assembly and make-up of planetary materials as windows into the universe. Samples from the Moon and meteorites from Mars are today’s best emissaries for what we will learn to live with as women explore the Moon in a few short years via Project Artemis. X-ray CT (xCT) has emerged, in my mind, as a most powerful tool for 3D “volumetric” analysis of the priceless collection of materials from the Moon (Apollo) that we have on hand, and pathfinding studies by a team of Non Destructive Evaluation engineers and scientists (and me) at Goddard have revealed new aspects of these materials. Thus, I am passionate about extending what are now laboratory capabilities here on Earth in xCT to space, ideally to the surface of the Moon so that astronauts can take advantage of the reconnaissance power and potential of this capability as they explore and make choices about which lunar materials to return to Earth or to experiment with using lunar-based laboratories. Thanks to xCT, we have been able to dissect how micro-meteorite craters form in rocks and glasses on the Moon, discover new mineral assemblages in martian meteorites, and recognize nearly-pure metallic resources in lunar samples. Moving these techniques to space is a cosmic imperative for me and working with key engineering leaders at Goddard such as Dr. Justin Jones, I am convinced this must happen if we are to capitalize on all the Moon and eventually Mars has to offer. Exploring the “stuff” in space that we will learn to live with is a critical step in exploration and xCT methods (here on Earth and in space) is a vital element of this pathway for humanity.”

Jim has received multiple NASA Outstanding Leadership awards for his work with Mars, and three Presidential Rank Awards for his scientific contributions to NASA’s mission. He is presently serving at Principal Investigator on the DAVINCI+ candidate mission to Venus for the 2020’s in NASA’s Discovery Program.

We look forward to having Dr. James Garvin at our event.


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