Mr. Rutan spoke last night on a few different topics. He spoke of the work he did, and about some of his designs; he highlighted the history of the space industry and its current "shortcomings". Mr. Rutan also spoke about how radical change needs to happen in the industry so that the youth can become inspired to go into the STEM fields.
One of the most powerful quotes of the evening I thought was, "In ten to fifteen years, there will be nobody on the planet that has walked on another world." How bizarre is that!? Once the astronauts that did walk on the moon (the ones that are left are not exactly young), all die, there will be nobody on the planet that has been to the moon. How weird... (coincidentally, this was Mr. Rutan's mantra for the evening.)
After his talk, Mr. Rutan stayed to answer questions and sign copies of his book, and I went up and spoke to him. I asked him how he got to become such a big player in aerospace, and about the materials SpaceShipOne was made out of. I also got a photograph with him, (which unfortunately turned out horribly, but I'll still share it with you all!) I know my geeky side comes out when I say this, but I was so star struck meeting him. I was meeting an idol of mine, and it was incredible.
|Burt Rutan and I!|
His talk will also be shown on CSPAN for anyone interested!