Science on Screen®: FIRST MAN at Belcourt Theatre, WED, MAR 20 AT 8:00PM!

Part of Belcourt Theatre’s Science on Screen® 2019.

Oscar®-winning director Damien Chazelle and star Ryan Gosling re-team for the riveting story behind the first manned mission to the moon, focusing on Neil Armstrong and the decade leading to the historic Apollo 11 flight—and man’s first walk on the moon on July 20, 1969. A visceral and intimate account told from Armstrong’s perspective, based on the book by James R. Hansen, the film explores the triumphs and the cost—on Armstrong, his family, his colleagues and the nation itself—of one of the most dangerous missions in history.

Manned Spaceflight: A Personal Account of the Physiological Challenges and Benefits of Sending Humans to Space

Post-screening discussion on the history, challenges and benefits of manned spaceflight with NASA payload specialist and astronaut Drew Gaffney, hosted by NASA engineer Tracie Prater.

About the Speakers:
Drew Gaffney recently served as NASA payload specialist/astronaut from 1984-1991 and flew aboard the space shuttle Columbia in 1991, performing multiple experiments examining physiological responses to microgravity. Gaffney also served as Professor of Medicine at Vanderbilt University from 1992-2017. He continues to work on patient safety research as a guest professor at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm. In 2007, Gaffney began his 145th “orbit,” aboard a sailboat on which he’s traveled over 30,000 miles with more to come.

Tracie Prater is an aerospace engineer in the Materials and Processes Laboratory at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, where she is currently the materials discipline lead for the in-space manufacturing (ISM) project. Using the International Space Station as a testbed, ISM is responsible for developing the manufacturing capabilities needed to produce parts on demand during long duration, crewed space exploration missions. She also serves as a subject matter expert for NASA’s Centennial Challenge on 3D Printing of Habitats, a public competition for additive manufacturing of structural habitats using recyclable materials and in situ resources ( She has a PhD in mechanical engineering from Vanderbilt University.

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