Space Academy Launches Partnership With School in Spain

Artur Chmielewski
Artur Chmielewski

Jet Propulsion Laboratory has been running its Space Academy for five years, but starting this year the program will be coordinated with a school in La Cañada Flintridge’s sister city, SEK International School in Villanueva de la Cañada, Spain.
The communities are sister cities because they share similarities beyond the name. The European Space Astronomy Center is located in Villanueva de La Cañada, just as JPL is located here, prompting the two cities to coordinate on a science program.
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JPL Hosts ‘Inspiring Visit’ by VP Pence

Photos courtesy NASA/Bill Ingalls
U.S. Vice President Mike Pence gives commands to a rover nicknamed “Scarecrow” as (from left) NASA Mars Exploration manager Li Fuk, Mars Curiosity Engineering Operations team chief Megan Lin, JPL Director Michael Watkins and daughter of Mike Pence, Charlotte Pence look on Saturday.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence was in the neighborhood Saturday, touring Jet Propulsion Laboratory before heading to a series of stops elsewhere in Southern California.
After his visit to the NASA campus, Pence tweeted: “Inspiring visit to Jet Propulsion Laboratory! Thanks to the team at @NASAJPL for your leadership in unmanned space exploration since 1957! Under @POTUS Trump. America is leading in space again!” Continue reading “JPL Hosts ‘Inspiring Visit’ by VP Pence”

Obituary: Dudley Bradstreet Killam Jr.

Dudley Bradstreet Killam Jr.

Dudley Bradstreet Killam Jr. of La Cañada Flintridge, father, husband, veteran and engineer, passed away on Thanksgiving at the age of 70 from a heart attack, surrounded by family. Born Oct. 15, 1947 in Reading, Massachusetts, to Dudley and Flora Killam, he attended high school at Haverhill High School near Atkinson, New Hampshire. He obtained a bachelor’s in chemistry and mathematics from the University of New Hampshire as an ROTC distinguished graduate and then completed master’s degrees in applied statistics and image science at Rochester Institute of Technology, also studying meteorology and analytical chemistry at Texas A&M. Dudley was truly a lifelong learner. He served for 30 years in the Air Force, rising to the rank of colonel and managing satellite programs, including the $4.3 billion Defense Support Program, which tracks missile launches via infrared imaging. He earned the Legion of Merit in acknowledgement of the crucial expertise he brought to this project and many others.
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Salvo Sees Funding, Engagement as LCUSD Focus

Christoper Salvo

Since he started campaigning, Christopher Salvo has enjoyed getting to know his neighbors better, people he might have met but hadn’t shared a substantial conversation with — perhaps because they’d never discussed local schools, a subject on which La Cañada Flintridge voters are well-versed.
Salvo, a project manager at Jet Propulsion Laboratory, is running for office for the first time. He is one of five candidates for three available La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board seats in the Nov. 7 election. Those elected will serve four-year terms. Continue reading “Salvo Sees Funding, Engagement as LCUSD Focus”

JPL Academy Students Delight in Discovering

Photo by Mirjam Swanson / OUTLOOK
Pinky Brandeau and Emily Sleeper were part of the “Skyentists” team, along with David Getzen, which participated in last week’s “final launch” at the Mars Yard at Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Thirty-five imaginative La Cañada High School students used a variety of contraptions, from bungee cords to hand cranks, to launch a variety of projectiles such as tennis balls, sponges and shoeboxes, skyward on Friday in the Mars Yard at Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
For the fifth year, LCHS students participated in the JPL Space Academy, an extracurricular program held in the fall that offers participants a real-world experience requiring them to work on their engineering skills — as well as business, communication and collaboration abilities. Continue reading “JPL Academy Students Delight in Discovering”

Solar Eclipse Dazes Young Gazers

Through freshman George Kamar’s pair of special safety glasses, Monday’s solar eclipse looked “a little like Pac-Man.”
It reminded senior Anthony Khalil of “a doughnut about to be eaten.”

Seventh-grader Irina Penanen described it as “the sun, with a slice out of it.”
In sync with campuses across the nation, students at La Cañada High School covered their eyes with “eclipse glasses” — 250 of which were donated by Jet Propulsion Laboratory — and peered skyward as the morning cooled slightly and its light gradually dimmed as the moon’s shadow grew on the Earth.

Freshman George Kamar said Monday’s solar eclipse looked “like Pac-Man.”

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JPL Sponsors Boy Scout Backpacking Trip

Photo courtesy of Troop 509
On top of the Tooth of Time are Mark Swain (sitting, from left), Jack Olson, Libby and Jonathan Shiner, and Stephan and Mircea Badescu. Standing: George Olson, Gino Graziadio, Max Fan, Forrest Swain, and Jack and Tom Andrews.

A crew from Boy Scout Troop 509, sponsored by Jet Propulsion Laboratory, recently spent two weeks in Philmont, New Mexico, backpacking 100-plus miles in the Rocky Mountains while carrying 40-pound packs. The seven Scouts and five adults, led by Scout Max Fan, climbed the 12,441-foot Baldy Mountain and led a burro they named Churro. They also did rock climbing, horseback riding, spar pole climbing, shotgun shooting, spear throwing, black powder rifle shooting and other challenging activities. Scouts saw petroglyphs and a T-Rex track. The weather was hot and dry, except for a hail storm and lightning. The crew traveled to and from Philmont by train, a 22-hour trip each way.
In late July, Troop 509 will go to Catalina Island for a week of swimming, sailing, kayaking, hiking and merit badges, and in early August, the troop will climb Mt. Whitney. To learn more about Troop 509, visit