12/1 UPDATE: As a special bonus, astronaut/aquanaut Cady Coleman (@Astro_Cady) will be joining our group of divers, press and other VIPs to teach the participants about her time as an Aquarius resident during her NEEMO expedition. If Cady’s name sounds familiar, it could be from her work as a special advisor to Sandra Bullock for her role in the film “Gravity.” Or maybe just because she’s been to space three times, the last trip being a six month stay at the International Space Station.After our successful “Aquaman” themed session at San Diego Comic Con in July, and our ongoing editorial collaborations with our friends at NASA, we have been working with Thomas Potts, the director of Aquarius Reef Base in Florida in hopes of organizing a Dent “field trip” to tour and learn about this amazing facility, and to see first hand how astronauts use the base to train for voyages in space. High resolution footage of a NASA mission to Aquarius: Aquarius is an underwater habitat located several miles offshore near Key Largo. It is deployed on the ocean floor next to deep coral reefs 62 feet below the surface. Aquarius is probably best known as being the location for NEEMO, (NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations) where astronauts, engineers and scientists live undersea for up to three weeks at a time in preparation for various space exploration expeditions. We are excited to announce that on May 3, 2016, we will be taking a handful of divers down to tour the base (inside and out) to learn about the facility and the work that the NASA aquanauts perform there. Invited divers will have the opportunity to spend one day diving Conch Reef with Aquarius staff to see a lunar lander mock-up frame used for NASA expeditions and instrument platforms used by industry to testbed sensors and materials. Divers will also board Aquarius for a 50-minute visit. This exclusive outing is open to select “Denters” (2016 conference attendees, sponsors, supporters) by special invitation only. Members of the press may request an invitation (a few slots are available for non-divers) by emailing: press at dentthefuture dot com. The following is required for all guest divers:
- Copy of a certification card from a recognized diving agency (e.g., PADI, NAUI, ADCI, military)
- Completed FIU liability waiver
- Completed participant information form indicating that guest is covered by a major medical insurance policy or a worker compensation policy
- Personal dive gear: mask, fins, swimsuit and thermal protection (Note: mask, fins and snorkel are available for rent; price is based on published program rates).