The Other Side of Campus

Episode 10: Inclusivity, Mentorship, and the Battle for Space with Moriba Jah

November 20th, 2020

Dr. Moriba Jah of the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at UT joins us to discuss his unconventional life trajectory that took him from guarding nukes in Montana for the Air Force to being a renowned academic with a mission to enlighten the general public about the environmental dangers we pose to our final frontier. Learn about his impressive push to promote transdiscplinary efforts on university campuses (particularly UT Austin), and find out how Dr. Jah defines inclusivity and what this means for space, space travel, and international cooperation in the face of current trends of populism and nationalism. Thanks for joining us on the Other Side of Campus!


Dr. Moriba Jah joined the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics in 2017. His research interests are in non-gravitational astrodynamics and advanced/non-linear multi-sensor/object tracking, prediction, and information fusion. His expertise is in space object detection, tracking, identification, and characterization, as well as spacecraft navigation. He received his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott, Arizona, and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado at Boulder specializing in astrodynamics and statistical orbit determination. Dr. Jah is a world-recognized subject matter expert in astrodynamics-based Space Domain Awareness sciences and technologies with 75+ publications in peer-reviewed journals, conferences, and symposia. He’s been an invited lecturer and keynote speaker at 20+ national and international space events, workshops and fora.

You can find Moriba's podcast series and more information here: and here: And check out his work on Eyes on the Sky here:


Asha Jain is a junior, earning her BS in Aerospace Engineering, Honors on the Space Track at the University of Texas at Austin. She is an active member of the Longhorn Rocketry Association which aims to launch student designed and manufactured rockets to a controlled altitude at America’s Spaceport Cup. In her freshman year, Asha led the association’s payload team, designed an experiment to test human venous compliance and integrated the experimental payload into supporting rocket systems. An internship with General Electric Aviation on their Passport jet engine introduced Asha to Humanoid Robotics, the field of her current honors thesis research. Asha works with UT Austin professor, Luis Sentis, to develop human-like navigation techniques to guide humanoid robots through dense crowds. This past semester Asha worked with French Space Law experts at her study abroad school Ecole Centrale Paris to write an article on the lack of space debris mitigation guidelines for planets other than Earth. This experience sparked Asha’s interest in Space Law, Global Security and International Conflict of Law. Asha joined the 2019 Next Generation Brumley Scholars to continue exploring this intersection between aerospace and policy. In the future, Asha plans to attend graduate school to earn a dual degree, masters in engineering and a JD. With these skills, Asha plans to enter the patent or space law field with aspirations of starting her own company, bringing innovative aerospace inventions to solve public needs.

PRODUCER'S NOTE: This episode was recorded on October 20th, 2020 via Zoom.

Assistant Producers/Hosts: Stephanie Seidel Holmsten, Asha Jain
(Intro theme features additional PTF fellows Patrick Davis, Keith Brown, David Vanden Bout)
Intro and Outro Music by: Charlie Harper (Additional background music by Charlie Harper, Blue Dot Sessions, Scott Holmes, and Ketsa)
-- Movie sample from Star Wars Episode V taken from YouTube.
Recorded, Edited, and Produced by: Michelle S Daniel
Creator & Executive Producer: Mary C. Neuburger

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