Astrosociology Research Institute (ARI)

The original Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation dedicated to the development of astrosociology TM

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ARI:  understanding "space and society" from a grounded perspective... TM      /        World Wide Web

About ARI

The Astrosociology Research Institute (ARI) is a California nonprofit public benefit educational corporation dedicated to the development of astrosociology as a multidisciplinary academic field.  Its mission includes providing assistance to individuals and organizations that choose to pursue ARI's mission as stated on the home page of this site. It's mission emphasizes assistance to students conducting astrosociological study and original research.  ARI is the original 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the development of astrosociology as an accepted field in academia and to cutting-edge astrosociological research.

The Astrosociology Research Institute is not a space advocacy group.  Rather, ARI dedicates itself to conducting science and to helping others do the same so that we may all construct a coherent astrosociological body of knowledge and related literature, and place the field of astrosociology into academia as a permanent fixture.

The staff and formal associations appear below.

ARI Officers
Jim Pass, Ph.D.

Jim Pass, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer
Email:  jpass at / Twitter:  @astrosociology

Dr. Pass received a doctorate in sociology from the University of Southern California in 1991. He also received a masters degree in sociology from USC in 1984 . Additionally he holds a B.S. in criminal justice and sociology, as well as a M.S. in criminal justice, both from California State University, Long Beach. Long seeking to combine his passion for space exploration with his professional training in sociology, he finally moved ahead with his long-term ambition in 2003 when inspired by an article he found on the internet written by Dr. Allen Tough, called Positive Consequences of SETI Before Detection, that mentioned the term "astrosociology" as a possible new field (see the Virtual Library page). As the founder of astrosociology, Dr. Pass refined the definition and scope of the new field over the next seven months until he was finally ready to publish the first website dedicated exclusively to astrosociology,, in July 2003. From that time forward, Dr. Pass and others have continued to refine the definition, which includes how astrosociology is relevant to daily social life and thus to societies, to the social science fields and disciplines, and to the natural and physical science fields and disciplines. Dr. Pass was adamant about expanding the field of astrosociology from a sociology subfield to a multidisciplinary field, which has helped the field develop more quickly in recent years.

Dr. Pass taught the first astrosociology course. He continues make oral presentations as well as write conference papers, articles, and book chapters regarding various subfields and issues related to astrosociology in order to demonstate the scope, relevance, and need to develop this important field. These subfields include astrosociology in the classroom, the definiton of astrosociology, the need to develop astrosociology alongside STEM subjects, planetary defense, spacefaring societies, astrobiology and SETI, applied astrosociology, space colonies and settlements (including the concept of space societies), medical astrosociology, deviance in space habitats, and the need for formalized collaboration between the two major branches of sciences: the social sciences on the one hand, and the physical and natural sciences on the other hand.

Since August 2004, when Dr. Pass met with Dr. Marilyn Dudley-Flores and Thomas Gangale at the American Sociology Association (ASA) meeting in San Francisco, the development of astrosociology carried forward. They brought the field to the American Institute of Aerosnautic and Astronautics (AIAA) and Dr. Pass was instrumental in establishing the Symposium on Astrosociology as part of the Space Propulsion and Energy Sciences International Forum (SPESIF) in 2007, which lasted for three years. In May 2008, these three founding officers formed the Astrosociology Research Institute, sparked by a major push by Dr. Pass.  Although Dr. Dudley-Flores and Mr. Gangale left ARI to pursure other matters, their contributions were invaluable to the development of astrosociology during its formative years.  Dr. Simone Caroti and Mr. Christopher Hearsey joined ARI in 2010 as officers to take their positions, and the field continues to make strong process under ARI's new leadership. Most recently, serveral new officers have joined ARI, including officers Kathleen Toerpe and Renato Rivera Rusca.

In 2011, Dr. Pass assisted Christopher Hearsey with the editing of a special edition of the journal Astropolitics that was dedicated exclusively to astrosociology. He co-wrote the introduction with Mr. Hearsey and contributed the first article examining the definition of astrosociology. Currently, Dr. Pass continues to work on various projects and programs along with officers, advisors, supporters, and volunteers to further the development of the field. Expect major developments in 2013 and 2014.

Kathleen Toerpe

Kathleen D. Toerpe, Ph.D., Deputy Chief Executive Officer for Programs and Special Projects / Assistant Treasurer
Email: ktoerpe at / Twitter: @ktoerpe

Dr. Toerpe currently teaches social studies courses at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. She earned an Honors BA in History and Philosophy (1984) from Marquette University, and a MA in Public History (1990) and PhD in American History (1992) from Loyola University Chicago. In past years, she has served as adjunct faculty at Loyola University Chicago, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and various community and technical colleges in Illinois and Wisconsin. She has served as a Historian-in-Residence and museum Educational Curator, providing local outreach programming, oral history program management and exhibit curation to all age groups. Her research field combines the disciplines of history, philosophy and sociology and focuses on how social and cultural trends impact American society - past, present and future. As an astrosociologist, her special interest is in exploring the social and cultural paradigm shift created by the confirmed discovery of extraterrestrial life along with anticipating the immediate and long-term consequences of First Contact.

She is currently active with the 100 Year Starship effort, initiated by NASA and DARPA, to lay the groundwork for future interstellar travel and volunteers as a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador spreading the excitement of NASA missions and initiatives to local community and school groups. She has also spent her spare time hunting for exoplanets and extraterrestrials as a citizen scientist.

Katrina Jackson

Katrina Jackson, M.S., Deputy Chief Executive Officer for Public Outreach and Education
Email: kjackson at / Twitter: @Katrina13J

Katrina Jackson earned her master's degree in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota in August, 2013 with the completion of her thesis "The Influence of Television and Film on Interest in Space and Science." She completed a bachelor's degree in Interdisciplinary Studies in 2011 at the University of Arizona with courses in planetary science, astronomy, media arts, and theatre arts. Ms. Jackson has interned in astronomy education at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum and in the Office of Communications at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.

Ms. Jackson is a volunteer NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador and enjoys giving interactive public presentations about space topics and NASA missions. She is currently based in the Washington, DC area where she is a member of Women in Film and Video and freelances as a production assistant. Some of her interests include the history of astronomy, the public's interest in space science and exploration, and especially the use of outer space and science in entertainment media.

Renato Rivera

Renato Rivera Rusca, M.A., Deputy Chief Executive Officer for International Outreach and Education / Assistant Secretary
Email: rrivera at

Renato Rivera Rusca is a graduate of Japanese Studies at Stirling University in Scotland and has conducted research on Japanese popular culture in Osaka University and Kyoto University. He has lectured at the Manga Faculty at Kyoto Seika University and has participated in many projects involving the Kyoto International Manga Museum since its inception. He is currently a lecturer at the School of Commerce, Meiji University.

In recent years he has administrated an introductory course on social and economic factors related to space exploration and development as part of the Special Themed Practicum classes in Meiji University, and is a member of the "Uchuu seizongaku kenyuukai", a research group for the study of issues pertaining to the changing role of culture in the space age and its imagined future for the survival of mankind.

Christopher M. Hearsey, M.S.

Christopher M. Hearsey, J.D., M.S., Secretary-Treasurer
Email:  chearsey at / Twitter: @HearseyAstrosoc

Christopher Hearsey serves as Corporate Counsel for Bigelow Aerospace in Washington, D.C. Prior to working at Bigelow Aerospace, Mr. Hearsey served as Deputy Chief Executive Officer for Programs and Special Projects for ARI from 2009 to 2013. He has also served as the Editor-in-Chief of ARI's newsletter Astrosociological Insights and as Special Editor for the journal Astropolitics' Special Edition on Astrosociology. Mr. Hearsey continues to serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors and Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Astrosociology.

Mr. Hearsey holds a B.A. in Mathematical Economics and Political Science from Temple University, a M.S. in Justice, Law and Society from The American University, a M.S. in Space Studies from the University of North Dakota, and a J.D. from the University of Mississippi School of Law specializing in Air and Space Law.

Mr. Hearsey has experience working at the United States Department of State, the United States Senate, and the National Air & Space Museum. He is active in the space policy and law circles and participated in the development of President Obama’s National Space Policy. In addition, he has consulted for the United States Department of State, The Boeing Company, and on several space-themed television programs. Mr. Hearsey is a member of several professional organizations including the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the American Society of International Law, International Bar Association, American Bar Association, and the Law and Society Association.

Mr. Hearsey publishes and presents articles that cover astrosociological, policy, and legal topics. As a young scholar, Mr. Hearsey has published articles with Phoenix Law Review, Astropolitics, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the Space Propulsion and Energy Sciences International Forum, and will soon publish his graduate thesis, The Evolution of Outer Space Law: An Economic Analysis of Rule Formation. The focus of Mr. Hearsey’s scholarship covers such issues as space property rights, corporate operations in space, economics of commercial space and interplanetary commerce, morality and justice as applied to the human expansion into the solar system, and developing the astrosociological discipline.

Simone Caroti, Ph.D.

Simone Caroti, Ph.D., Assistant Secretary

Simone Caroti is Director of Public and Educational Outreach and a member of the board of the Astrosociology Research Institute. In this role, he aims at expanding ARI's membership base and at establishing a set of templates for introducing astrosociological education in schools and colleges across the country. Mr. Caroti is also co-chair of the Astrosociology Symposium at Space Propulsion & Energy Sciences International Forum.

Dr. Caroti received his BA in Anglo-American literature at the University of Trieste, Italy, in February of 2002, and in the summer of the same year moved to Purdue University, Indiana, to conduct his graduate studies in the Comparative Literature program. He received his MA in 2004, and his Ph.D. in 2009 with a dissertation on the history of the generation starship concept in science fiction. This dissertation is now in the process of becoming a book to be published in the near future.

Dr. Caroti has dedicated his graduate years to the study of science fiction (SF), both as a literary mode in its own right and as a reflection on the variables inherent in the human adventure in space. Specifically, his work for ARI focuses on building conceptual and procedural bridges linking science fiction to the larger field of astrosociology, so as to make it possible to conduct astrosociological studies both of individual SF stories and of entire sub-genres within science fiction. He has published articles for the American Institute of Physics and a book chapter for Purdue University. He is currently an adjunct professor in the English Department at Purdue, teaching introductory composition and professional writing.

Board of Directors
Christopher Hearsey, J.D., M.S., Chairman (See biography above).
Simone Caroti, Ph.D. (See biography above).
Geoffrey Notkin, B.F.A.
Geoffrey Notkin, B.F.A.

Geoff Notkin hosts the STEM Journals for Cox Communications and the multi award-winning television adventure series Meteorite Men for Science Channel. He has also appeared in shows for Discovery, NASA EDGE, TLC, PBS, A&E, National Geographic Channel, History Channel, Travel Channel, and the BBC. Geoff is a science writer, meteorite specialist, photographer, world traveler, and the owner of Aerolite Meteorites LLC, a company that provides meteorite specimens to collectors and institutions worldwide. He has appeared on Coast to Coast and the Today show, and has been interviewed by The Washington Post, The Huffington Post,, and many other leading publications.

An award-winning author, Geoff has published more than 150 articles on meteoritics, paleontology, astronomy, adventure travel, history, and the arts, with his work appearing in Astronomy, Astronomy Now, Sky & Telescope, All About Space, USA Today, Wired, Reader’s Digest, The Village Voice, Seed, Rock & Gem, Geotimes, Meteorite, and many other national and international publications. He is the author of the books Meteorite Hunting: How To Find Treasure From Space and Rock Star: Adventures Of A Meteorite Man, and a popular science and arts blog, The Logical Lizard, for

Geoff has worked with many of the world’s major institutions including The American Museum of Natural History, New York; The Natural History Museum, London; and The Center for Meteorite Studies at ASU, Tempe. He is a member of The Explorer’s Club, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the International Meteorite Collectors’ Association, and the Association of Applied Paleontological Sciences. The minor planet 132904, discovered at Mount Palomar, was named after Geoff in recognition of his contributions to science and education.

Expeditions have taken Geoff to forty-five countries and some of our planet’s most remote areas including northern Siberia, Chile’s Atacama Desert, the Australian Outback and he has three times crossed the Arctic Circle.

Geoff was born on 14th street in Manhattan and grew up in London, England. He studied geology, astronomy, photography, writing, and design in London, Boston and New York. He now resides in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona.
Jim Pass, Ph.D. (See biography above).
Renato Rivera Rusca, M.A. (See biography above).
Kathleen D. Toerpe, Ph.D. (See biography above).

Board of Advisors

Lynn E. Baroff, M.S.

Lynn E. Baroff, M.S.

Lynn Baroff is Executive Director of the California Space Education and Workforce Institute (CSEWI), a non-profit agency established by the State of California. The institute’s purpose is to integrate the efforts of that state’s educational establishment and its huge space enterprise, in maintaining and growing the workforce needed for the world’s largest space economy.

He comes to the Institute after 16 years at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), where he most recently worked as Human-Systems Integration lead with NASA’s Constellation Program, America’s next generation program for human space flight. He continues his association with NASA as a Senior Research Scientist at NASA Ames Research Center, leading an agency-wide team in developing a standard for automated and robotic systems that support long duration human space missions. His views on the importance of Astrosociology to the space program stem from his work in developing the social and work process patterns that will support new and long duration space missions to the moon, Mars, and beyond.  Mr. Baroff began his NASA career as chief of management training at JPL, where he was an internal consultant to senior management on critical organizational issues. He worked on project formulation and systems engineering teams for JPL’s Dawn mission, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, New Millennium Deep Space 2, and Stardust mission. He also served as JPL’s special liaison to the United States Air Force space program, located at the Space and Missile Systems Center in El Segundo.

Before NASA, Mr. Baroff was a management consultant specializing in work systems analysis, strategic planning, and human resources management. He worked with such clients as Toshiba America, Xerox, Rockwell, and the Country of Los Angeles, creating employee and management educational programs. He has also been a commercial television producer, director and station executive, creating over 3,000 television programs and over 750 commercials.

He holds a Master of Science in Engineering Management, Bachelor of Arts in Communication, and has completed graduate work in Instructional Design and Behavioral Science. Additionally he holds a Certification in Systems Engineering from the California Institute of Technology, and several certifications from NASA. He has been an adjunct faculty member in the USC School of Public Administration, and is currently adjunct faculty at UCLA, teaching Systems Engineering in the Graduate Extension program.

Mr. Baroff is a founding member of, a member of the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), a member of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES), and a Board member of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE). His publications include many peer-reviewed papers and conference presentations on topics as diverse as program-level Systems Engineering, Human Factors issues in mission assurance, human-rating for robotic and automated systems used in human space flight, and role-focused competency-based approaches to human resource development in the American workforce.

Sheryl Bishop, Ph.D.

Sheryl Bishop, Ph.D.

Dr. Sheryl Bishop, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor, and Social Psychologist at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas. She currently serves as Senior Biostatistician for the School of Nursing. From 2001-2007, she served as the curriculum director for UTMB’s Space Life Sciences Ph.D. curriculum. In addition, Dr. Bishop is a faculty at the International Space University, Strasbourg, France, and has contributed yearly to ISU’s Space Science Program since 1994. She served as the co-Chair and Chair for the International Space University’s (ISU) Affiliate Campuses from 1999-2001 and 2006-2008. For the last 20 years, Dr. Bishop has investigated human performance and group dynamics in teams in extreme environments, including deep cavers, mountain climbers, desert survival groups, polar expeditioners and Antarctic winter-over groups and various field simulations of isolated, confined environments for space. She routinely presents her research at numerous scientific conferences, is published in both the medical and psychological fields on topics as diverse as psychometric assessment, research methodology, outcomes research, psychosocial group dynamics and human performance in extreme environments. She has participated in various television documentaries on space and extreme environments by Discovery Channel, BBC, 60 Minutes and the History Channel. Dr. Bishop is a founding member and Board of Trustee member of the Society of Human Performance in Extreme Environments and Senior Editor for the HPEE Journal. She joined the Board of Advisors of the Astrosociology Research Institute (ARI) in June of 2009. Dr. Bishop has served as a grants reviewer for the Canadian Space Agency, Contributing Editor for Life Sciences for Habitation (formerly the Journal of Life Support and Biospheric Sciences) and Review Editor for the Journal of Aviation, Space and Environmental Medicine. Through her extensive work in analog environments into the social psychological and behavioral issues pertinent to long duration space missions, she has strongly supported the emergence of the field of astrosociology as critical to the inclusion of the most essential element of human factors, the interpersonal human, at every level of consideration for successful transition to a space culture.

Sheryl Bishop, Ph.D.

Ken Duffy, Ph.D.

Dr. Duffy is a licensed professional counselor, supervisor, educator, sociologist, and aspiring astrosociologist. He teaches theoretical and applied undergraduate sociology and graduate counseling courses in theory and practice for several academic institutions. Ken’s interest in astrosociology began in 2004 after reading Dr. Jim Pass’ Inaugural Essays.

Ken was fortunate enough to be the first student to take the first Introduction to Astrosociology course offered by Dr. Pass. In addition, Ken has completed courses in the Master of Aeronautical Science: Space Studies degree program, with Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

As a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor (LPCS) in private practice, Ken provides counseling and therapy to a diverse population and provides clinical supervision to student interns and graduate students who seek state licensure in NC .

Albert A. Harrison, Ph.D.

Albert A. Harrison, Ph.D.
Albert A. Harrison received his B.A. and M.A. in Psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Michigan.  In 1967, he joined the faculty of the Department of Psychology at the University of California, Davis, and in 1979 he advanced to Professor.  Now Professor Emeritus, he is the author or co-author of approximately 100 papers in a wide range of journals, and his books include Living Aloft: Human Requirements for Extended Spaceflight (with Mary Connors and Faren Akins, NASA, 1985), From Antarctica to Outer Space: Life in Isolation and Confinement (with Yvonne A. Clearwater and Christopher P. McKay, Springer-Verlag, 1991), After Contact: The Human Response to Extraterrestrial Life (Plenum, 1997) and, Spacefaring: The Human Dimension (University of California Press, 2001).  His most recent book, Starstruck: Cosmic Visions in Science Religion and Folklore (Berghahn, 2007) describes how rapidly accumulating scientific findings about our place in the universe are encouraging people to seek new answers to old existential questions.

Dr. Harrison was a member of NASA's Space Human Factors Engineering Science and Technology Working Group and of the Permanent SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Committee of the International Academy of Astronautics. In December, 2003, he was principal investigator of a NASA-sponsored conference on new directions in behavioral health, and edited a special supplement on this topic for Aviation, Space & Environmental Medicine (June, 2005). He is currently involved in planetary defense (protecting the Earth from asteroids and comets) and is heavily involved in the International Academy of Astronautics' Space Architecture Study Group, seeking new approaches to human-centered design.

A former deputy US editor of Systems Research and Behavioral Science, he may be reached at the Department of Psychology, One Shields Avenue, University of California at Davis, Davis, CA 95616 USA.

Luke Idziak

Luke Idziak, B.A., (M.S. Candidate 2013)

Luke Idziak received his B.A. in Historic Preservation (2006) from the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, VA and subsequently performed conservation work and analysis upon a Saturn V rocket with a team at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama.

Mr. Idziak is currently working towards his M.Sc. degree at the International Space University in Strasbourg, France. His primary area of interest lies at the intersection of historic preservation, public policy, and the artifactual elements of human space exploration. Prior to beginning graduate studies in order to focus on the preservation of orbital and lunar cultural resources, he served as a researcher at the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies in Arlington, Virginia where he was a member of the Center for Neuroscience Studies. His work there involved analysis and recommendations regarding human-machine and human-computer interfaces in the civil and military sectors as well as the current state of, and new technologies for, orbital debris mitigation. Mr. Idziak believes that there is value in securing material parts of the extant present in order that future generations should enjoy a continuity with, and an understanding of the early days of human space access and utilization; thus providing the raw material to see what has come before and to dream of what yet may still be.

Jeff Lee

Jeff Lee, M.Sc.

Jeff Lee is a theoretical physicist with the X-Physics Power and Propulsion Project at Icarus Interstellar. Jeff’s research specializations are: Quantum Black Holes, Relativistic Radiation & Thermodynamics, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), and Superbolides.

His astrosociological interests include: the Hazards from Near-Earth Objects, the Virtual Evolution of Interpersonal Relationships across Interplanetary and Interstellar Distances, and the Implications and Plausibility of First Contact Scenarios.

He is a reviewer for the Journal of the British Interplanetary Society, member of the International Advisory Board of the new space education journal Axiom, and researcher in the Frontier Physics Group at The Institute for Interstellar Studies.

Jeff is a tenured faculty member of Crescent School in Toronto, Ontario, where he lectures on Physics and Earth and Space Science. Additionally, he retains research interests in the field of Instructional Strategies for Students with High Functioning Autism.

He received his Bachelor of Science in Physics from York University in Toronto, Ontario, where he was awarded the Denise Hobbins Prize for Physics. As an undergraduate, Jeff worked in York University’s Laser Processing Laboratory, and studied Laser Materials Processing in Space (LaMPS) and the interaction of high-energy CO2 laser radiation with water. Bow Shocks of Atmosphere-penetrating Asteroids, a research paper Jeff wrote as an undergraduate, contended that the minimum diameter asteroid required for a Mass Extinction Event is only the now-accepted 1 km, and not the then-accepted 2-3 km. 

For his Master of Science in Physics from the University of Windsor in Windsor, Ontario, he investigated Laser-Induced Fluorescence Spectroscopy. Concurrent with his studies in Physics, Jeff did graduate work in Applied Human Biomechanics.

Jeff is a certified H-2 hang glider pilot who also enjoys skydiving, snorkeling, weightlifting, martial arts, archery, target shooting, ham radio (VE3SPB) and electronics, computers, sociology, history, philosophy, and ichthyology.

Elizabeth Lockard

Elizabeth Lockard, Ph.D.
Dr. Lockard received her B.A. in Philosophy from the University of New Hampshire, her M.Arch in Architecture from Yale University, and her Ph.D. in Futures Studies from the University of Hawaii. She has written several articles on space habitat design from a humanistic perspective. Her doctoral dissertation, Human Migration to Space: Alternative Technological Approaches for Long-term Adaptation to Extraterrestrial Environments and the Implications for Evolution, was selected and published by Springer for outstanding research in the field of Space Studies.

She has taught architecture at the University of Hawaii School of Architecture and is currently an assistant professor in the Environmental + Interior Design program at Chaminade University in Honolulu.

Kevin Maher

Kevin Maher
Kevin Maher received his B.A. in English from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He has worked as a webmaster for academic and commercial sites. Mr. Maher has used his web experience to assist ARI over the last year to redesign the ARI website. He is an aspiring scholar in multidisciplinary space studies and speaks Mandarin, French, and English. Mr. Maher currently lives in Shanghai.

Kevin Maher

Joseph Reynolds
Joseph Reynolds holds a BS in Architecture from Keene State College and an MS in Historic Preservation from Clemson University/The College of Charleston. His graduate research on the protection of the Apollo sites is driven by his passion for the protection of all historically significant sites whether they be on our planet or not.  Mr. Reynolds wrote his Master's thesis on the legal framework necessary for designating the Apollo Lunar Landing Sites as U.S. National Historic Landmarks and UNESCO World Heritage Sites for their importance to human history.  Mr Reynolds is currently working in Western Massachusetts as a preservation contractor and real estate developer while writing and working to change the public perception of terrestrial and outer space preservation issues alike.

Vadim Rygalov, Ph.D.

Vadim Rygalov, Ph.D.

Dr. Rygalov received his B.S. and M.S. in 1974 and 1976, respectively, in biophysics from Krasnoyarsk State University & Institute of Biophysics, Siberian Branch Russian Academy of Sciences.  He received his doctorate from the same university in 1987, majoring in physical-mathematical sciences, ecological biophysics & environmental design.  His thesis was entitled "Theoretical-Experimental Analysis of Sea Macro-Algae Growth."

Dr.  Rygalov currently serves as Associate Professor in the Space Studies Department, John D. Odegard School of Aerospace Sciences at the University of North Dakota.  His professional activities include life sciences/life support in space and human factors in extreme environments, the variety of performances under extreme environmental conditions (specifically free fall from stratosphere, closed ecological systems for life support (specifically for space applications), altered pressure greenhouses project (space greenhouses)-- investigating altered-pressure physical fundamentals and environmental engineering, and artificial climate design based on the interaction between inside-outside greenhouse environments and altered-pressure plant physiology (evapo-transpiration).

Dr. Rygalov is interested in investigation of principles of closure for ecological systems functioning and its applications for life support in different areas. His research is strongly based on mathematical approach to experimental data description and interpretation.


ARI Research Team

Sheryl Bishop, Ph.D., Research Associate
Simone Caroti, Ph.D., Research Associate
Albert A. Harrison, Ph.D., Research Associate
Christopher Hearsey, J.D., M.S., Senior Research Scientist
Luke Idziak, B.A., Research Associate
Katrina Jackson, M.S., Research Associate
Jim Pass, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist
Renato Rivera Rusca, Senior Research Scientist
Vadim Rygalov, Ph.D., Research Associate
Kathleen Toerpe, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist



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