Harv Wichman To Lecture At World Space Congress

Professor Emeritus Harv Wichman has been named a delegate to the World Space Congress, held Oct. 10-19 in Houston. Wichman, longtime professor of psychology, will present a lecture titled The Psychological and Socio-Cultural Aspects of Disasters Caused by Asteroids and Comets Striking the Earth.

The World Space Congress, “a super-sized professional convention,” Wichman says, is held every 10 years in a different part of the world, and sponsored by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, an organization of scientists and engineers.

While at the conference, Wichman will also participate in a workshop focusing on government efforts to mitigate the potential impact of meteor strikes. “Every night, the sky is full of junk that falls to earth and makes shooting stars,” Wichman said. “But every 80 years or so, we get struck by a really good-sized thing that could be severely destructive.”

Although rockets are already able to land on meteors, the newest challenge is developing technology that will allow a rocket to attach itself to a meteor, thus directing the meteor’s speed and trajectory, he said.

Wichman is also a volunteer in developing after-school curriculum for a new traveling space museum, teaching space biology at Pacific Lodge Boys’ Home in Woodland Hills.