Armenian astrophysicist Garik Isreaelian, founder of the starmus festivalan event for the popularization of science born in 2011 and which in its five editions has brought together a multitude of Nobel laureates, influential scientists and music stars, hopes that the event will be held again in the Canary Islands .
Starmus astronomical festival emigrates to Norway after leaving debt black hole in Canary Islands
In fact, the first three editions of the prestigious festival were held in Tenerife and La Palma, with such prominent names as Stephen Hawking, Neil deGrasse Tyson or Bryan May, among many other personalities. But the next two appointments moved to Norway and Switzerland. Now, the sixth will take place in September in Armenia and will commemorate 50 years of Mars exploration.
The festival was due to return to the Canary Islands, but some complications remain unknown. “Everything is in the hands of the government of the Canary Islands because they are the ones who must make the final decision,” said the scientist, referring to some problems that have arisen with the formalization of contracts during his participation this Friday in a course on the sector. new space which took place these days in Santander within the framework of the summer courses of the International University Menéndez Pelayo (UIMP).
Despite everything, Israeli was optimistic about the return of this event to La Palma. “Starmus is made for La Palma and La Palma is made for Starmus,” he said on Friday when interviewed by the media.
Isrealian, an astrophysicist at the Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands, was one of the last speakers on the third day of the course Competitive opportunities for the new Spanish space: technology, impact and society which ends today at the Menéndez Pelayo International University.
In the last session of this proposal, it was intended to inspire participants through proposals and challenges related to the special sector.
In this aspect, the Starmus Festival is postulated as an indisputable reference. “For a week, young researchers are in contact with the best researchers in the world, such as Neil Armstrong or Stephen Hawking”, he commented. This circumstance, together with another series of cooperative activities, creates, according to him, “an atmosphere of incredible inspiration”.
second space race
On the other hand, the Armenian astrophysicist believes that humanity is already immersed in a second space race, which has Mars as its main objective and is led by China, the United States and the private sector.
The Israeli does not see this second space race badly because, as he said, the actors who participate in it do so to achieve “better technologies and better science”.
“It’s not a weapons competition. It’s a technological competition”, underlined the astrophysicist, who believes that with this, “everyone wins”.
The Armenian scientist recalled that there are currently two robots on Mars, one from China and the other from the United States and Europe, which are competing to see who gets the best data and who performs the first evidence of molecular life on this planet, which is, according to pointed out, considered by “many” to be the place where humanity can be “saved” in the event of a climatic catastrophe on Earth.
What he sees more clearly is that technologies that are developed with Mars in mind will also serve on Earth.
“All the danger we are going to have on Earth in 50 years is about the same as what we have to develop to have something on Mars. So we still win. We always win: for Earth and to go to Mars “, did he declare.
In addition, he highlighted the weight of the private sector in this second race, which has made significant investments that have materialized in a new generation of aircraft.
According to him, this, combined with the reduction in the cost of technologies, has led to a second space race.