Dr. Bonnie J. Buratti, planetary astronomer at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, gave audience members a personal tour of NASA’s latest discoveries during a presentation Thursday night in the South Pasadena Library Community Room.
Moving through the Solar System from Mercury, Venus and Mars, Buratti described land-forms that are found to be similar on Earth.
As an astronomer, Buratti has a pretty interesting night job. Everything beyond Earth’s atmosphere is her purview, including planets, asteroids, comets, stars, galaxies, dark matter, the Black Hole, the Big Bang, the history of the universe and its future.
Described in the book, she studies huge ice plumes and tar-like deposits on the moons of Saturn, nitrogen glaciers on Pluto, active gullies on Mars, sulfur-rich volcanoes and lakes on Io, hydrocarbon rivers and lakes on Titan, and other space assets.
Currently, Buratti serves on the science teams for both the Cassini and New Horizons missions. She is also the NASA project scientist for the Rosetta Mission, which heading to a comet.
“Worlds Fantastic, Worlds Familiar: A Guided Tour of the Solar System” is available at Barnes and Noble and on Amazon.
South Pasadena Library Director Steve Fjeldsted contributed to this article.