Tucson Festival of Books

Dante S. Lauretta


Sponsored by University of Arizona Press

Dante S. Lauretta is a Regents Professor in the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Ariz. He holds a Bachelor of Science in mathematics and physics and a Bachelor of Arts in East Asian Studies from the University of Arizona. He completed his doctorate in earth and planetary sciences at Washington University in St. Louis. His research interests include the formation and evolution of the Solar System and the origin of life, with an emphasis on laboratory studies of meteorites and returned extraterrestrial samples, as well as spacecraft exploration of asteroids and comets. Lauretta is Principal Investigator for NASA’s OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return mission. He is also a Co-Investigator on OSIRIS-APEX, NASA's extended mission to asteroid Apophis, JAXA’s Hayabusa2 asteroid sample return mission, and ESA’s Hera mission to asteroid Didymos. His research uses astronomical observations, spacecraft-based remote sensing and laboratory measurements of extraterrestrial materials.

Lauretta received the University of Arizona Galileo Circle Dean's Award in 2020. He was elected a Fellow of the Meteoritical Society in 2014. He was awarded the NASA Silver Achievement Medal in 2017 for his role on the OSIRIS-REx Asteroid Astronomy team. In 2017 he was also inducted into Boys and Girls Clubs of America Alumni Hall of Fame.

His current book is "Bennu 3-D: Anatomy of an Asteroid" published by the University of Arizona Press. His memoir, "The Asteroid Hunter," is published by Grand Central Publications.

Visit website | Arizona author

Awards: Fellow of the Meteoritical Society in 2014; NASA Silver Achievement Medal in 2017; Boys and Girls Clubs of America Alumni Hall of Fame in 2017

Communities: Arizona Author, Tucsonan


Scheduled events:
The Wonders of Bennu
The authors of "Bennu 3-D" share the story of OSIRIS-REx and Bennu through vivid descriptions and extraordinary photos. Listeners and readers of the book will feel like they are right there exploring along with the scientists.

Science City - Main Stage (Seats 195)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Science / Medicine / Technology
Signing area: Sales & Signing Area - Science City (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelists: Carina Bennett, Dante Lauretta, Cat Wolner
Moderator: Jennifer Casteix
Dante S. Lauretta
Bennu 3-D: Anatomy of an Asteroid Bennu, named for the ancient Egyptian phoenix, was the chosen destination of OSIRIS-REx, NASA’s premier mission of asteroid exploration, launched in 2016. Study of the asteroid is important in safeguarding the future of planet Earth, but Bennu is also a time capsule from the dawn of our Solar System, holding secrets over four-and-a-half billion years old about the origin of life and Earth as a habitable planet. In 2020 the OSIRIS-REx spacecraft successfully landed on the surface of Bennu and collected pristine asteroid material for delivery to Earth in September 2023. Scientific studies of the samples, along with data collected during the rendezvous, promise to help find answers to some of humanity’s deepest questions: Where did we come from? What is our destiny in space? This book, the world’s first complete (and stereoscopic) atlas of an asteroid, is the result of a unique collaboration between OSIRIS-REx mission leader Dante Lauretta and Brian May’s London Stereoscopic Company. Lauretta’s colleagues include Carina Bennett, Kenneth Coles, and Cat Wolner, as well as Brian May and Claudia Manzoni, who became part of the ultimately successful effort to find a safe landing site for sampling. The text details the data collected by the mission so far, and the stereo images have been meticulously created by Manzoni and May from original images collected by the OSIRIS-REx cameras.

The University of Arizona Press, Booth #242 (Seats 1)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 12:30 pm - 1:00 pm
Science / Medicine / Technology

Author: Dante Lauretta
Looking Beyond the Stars
Award-winning space scientists Aomawa Shields and Dante Lauretta sit down with Science Dean Carmala Garzione and share the stories that shaped them to do the extraordinary.

Science City - Main Stage (Seats 195)  View this venue on the Festival map
Sat, Mar 9, 2:30 pm - 3:30 pm
Science / Medicine / Technology
Signing area: Sales & Signing Area - Science City (following presentation)  View this venue on the Festival map

Panelists: Dante Lauretta, Aomawa Shields
Moderator: Carmala Garzione

Books:
Bennu 3-D
Anatomy of an Asteroid
Science / Medicine / Technology
University of Arizona Press
July 2023
ISBN 9780816551767
208 pages
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The Asteroid Hunter
A Scientist's Journey to the Dawn of Our Solar System
Science / Medicine / Technology
Grand Central Publishing
March 2024
ISBN 9781538722947
336 pages