“On the road again!”
Our week began by travelling to Houston, Texas on Monday, April, 21st. Our first stop, “Space City”, NASA Johnson Space Center, where we visited the Lunar Planetary Institute and Dr. David Kring, famous for his participation on the team that discovered the Chicxulub impact crater. Kring and his team worked to link the crater and its ejecta to the K-T boundary mass extinction of the dinosaurs and over half of the plants and animals that existed on Earth 65 million years ago. David told us how he made the discovery that the mass extinction event that destroyed the dinosaurs were not volcanic but due to an asteroid.
Moving on down the road, we headed to College Station and the Texas A&M TEEX, Disaster City complex. But first we stopped for Nelly to pick up her authentic cowboy boots for the Disaster City experience.
We scoped out the property in preparation for the upcoming simulations on Thursday and Saturday.
Home to the National Emergency Response and Rescue Training Center since 1998, TEEX has been at the forefront of preparing the emergency response community to prepare for, respond to, manage, and recover from large scale natural disasters, terrorists incidents, and public health emergencies.
There we took part into an exercise with damages subsequent to a large explosion from a gas pipeline. In addition to the gas explosion there was radiological contamination from a storage operation in an adjacent building. The explosion and subsequent contamination provides the scenario for exercising an asteroid impact. Dr. Peter Jenniskens from the SETI Institute came with us on this field trip to discuss and gauge the training exercise.
Fire, flame, Blue Team explosion, chemical, radiological contamination, asteroid impact and structural collapse scenario:We felt the heat in Disaster city!
The days spent in Texas were exhausting, but now we head to the big cities! We are now off to Boston on Sunday 27th April, then to the Capitol of the USA, Washington DC Direct to NASA HQ and the… Whitehouse!
That will mark the end of our journey…
At least for now!
Wait for more!
Annette Rodrigues, Disaster Playground Project Manager and retired Payload Crew (Astronaut) Trainer.
WHAT DESIGN CAN DO
8 May, 2014 Amsterdam
Disaster Playground at London Design Week
20 – 22 September, 2014 Victoria & Albert Museum, London