There are a handful of Czechs who are part of the booming hi-tech new economy on the US West coast and more specifically in Silicon Valley. But few could boast a career that over the last decade has been littered with the names of so many of the large multinational US companies in the forefront of technology and its applications as Zlín native David Pavlík. His career has jumped from Microsoft, to Amazon, multinational pay for film company Netflix, and currently the private company at the cutting edge of the new space race, SpaceX.
A new book of stunning photographs from Space by former NASA astronaut Leroy Chiao published by the Zdeněk Sklenář Gallery was launched in Prague this week. Chiao’s photos, shot in orbit some 400 kilometres above the Earth, were taken from four separate missions between 1994 and 2005. On the occasion of the book launch, Czech Radio’s Miroslav Krupička asked the astronaut about how the idea for the book, due to also come out in English and Chinese, came together after he and Sklenář met.
Former astronaut Charles Duke, who flew to the moon as part of Apollo 16, is in Prague for the opening of an exhibition called Gateway to Space. Duke, who turns 80 this year, told news website iDnes he would “love to return to the moon” where he said he had not felt afraid but “at home”. Duke, who was born in Charlotte, South Carolina, studied at West Point and is an engineer and retired army pilot. He was the 10th and also the youngest person to walk on the moon’s surface, in 1972. In Prague the former astronaut stressed the importance of the pursuit of new space missions, including missions to Mars.
On March 2 1978 - for the first time - a person was launched into space who was neither a Soviet nor an American citizen. His name was Vladimír Remek, and he came from Czechoslovakia. Millions of Czechs and Slovaks had the chance to follow the event live both on radio and television, and it was even celebrated in song:
The Czech cartoon character Krtek, or Little Mole, has been given a hero’s welcome back home after spending two weeks in space. The American astronaut Andrew Feustel, who took Krtek to space aboard the Endeavour space shuttle, arrived in Prague last week with his family, and is now touring the Czech Republic with Krtek to promote science and technology among young Czechs.
The Czech Academy of Sciences has awarded visiting US astronaut Andrew
Feustel a medal for his contribution to science, education and culture as
well as the promotion of humanitarian ideas. The astronaut will tour Czech
towns to give lectures and take part in debates on space exploration for
almost two weeks. The 45-year-old Feustel will also co-chair a programme
prepared by the US Embassy and the Academy of Sciences called "The
Junior Ambassadors of Science and Technology", encouraging Czech
to develop interests in engineering and the sciences.
Mr Feustel recently took a Czech flag and a plush toy of the legendary animated Czech character krtek or Mole (created by artist Zdeněk Miler) on the last mission of the space shuttle Endeavor. The astronaut’s wife Indira, who has Czech roots and is with him on his visit to the Czech Republic, said the idea of taking the popular krtek on the mission was to draw children and youth to the wonders of space exploration.
American astronaut Andrew Feustel arrived in Prague on Friday to begin a two-week series of lectures in Czech cities. The geophysicist was on the last flight of the space shuttle Endeavour last May and took with him a toy figure of the famous Mole character, created by Czech animator Zdeněk Miler, which he also brought with him to the Czech Republic. Meeting the American ambassador to Prague upon arrival, Mr Feustel said that the Mole had enjoyed the trip but could not go into open space, as the crew lacked a small enough suit.