AGU holds an annual public lecture on a hot topic in Earth and/or space science at its annual meeting in San Francisco.
The 2014 Public Lecture was on The MAVEN Mission to Mars.
The Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission was launched in November 2013 and it has arrived and is orbiting Mars! It will orbit the planet, and study the top of its atmosphere and how it interacts with sunlight and with the solar wind; the goal is to understand where the water and CO2 from an earlier atmosphere went. At the Public Lecture, Bruce Jakosky, Roger Yelle, and Sandra Cauffman discussed the mission science concept, science observations made during the cruise to get there, observations of Comet Siding Spring (which made a close approach to Mars in October 2014), and early observations of the Mars upper atmosphere. They also went into detail about how the spacecraft was developed and launched, and the day-to-day operations as it orbits Mars. View a video of their talk below.
Dr. Lucile Jones, Science Advisor for Risk Reduction with the United States Geological Survey, delivered the American Geophysical Union’s annual public lecture Imagine an America without Los Angeles: Natural Hazards and the Complexity of Urban America at the 2013 Fall Meeting in San Francisco.
Watch our 2012 public lecture Curiosity Driven Mars Exploration including interviews with panelists Michael Meyer, John Grotzinger, and Rebecca Williams.