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December Smithsonian Saturday Program at Cultural Heritage Center focuses on “The Deep Space Network”

The next Smithsonian Saturday program at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre will be held on Saturday, Dec. 3, at 2 p.m. CST and will focus on the effort to research space using radio telescopes and various telescopes already working in deep space.

“The Deep Space Network” was originally broadcast by the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum on Oct. 8, 2014, as part of the “What’s New in Aerospace” program series. There is no fee to attend this program, but regular admission fees apply to visit the museum exhibits.

For 50 years, NASA's Deep Space Network has been providing a vital link to space exploration. The DSN consists of giant radio antennas all over the world. Supporting interplanetary missions and radar and radio astronomy observations, the DSN antennas are an essential element of deep space exploration.

In the video, Dr. Joe Lazio, chief scientist for the DSN; and Dr. Eric Smith, director of the James Webb Space Telescope, will discuss how the DSN communicates with NASA's deep space telescopes, the technological advances it has enabled, and how the James Webb Space Telescope will communicate with the DSN and contribute to the future of deep space exploration.

“This is a terrific program to close out the calendar year of Smithsonian programming,” said Jay Smith, museum director for the South Dakota State Historical Society. “The presenters clearly demonstrate the exciting technological advances now taking place at NASA.”

Smith noted that museum officials will be announcing a new programming series in conjunction with the Smithsonian in early 2017.

The South Dakota State Historical Society became a Smithsonian Affiliate in January 2013 and is the only affiliate in South Dakota.

About the South Dakota State Historical Society
The South Dakota State Historical Society is a division of the Department of Education. The State Historical Society, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is headquartered at the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The center houses the society’s world-class museum, the archives, and the historic preservation, publishing and administrative/development offices. Call (605) 773-3458 or visit for more information. The society also has an archaeology office in Rapid City; call (605) 394-1936 for more information.

About Smithsonian Affiliations
Established in 1996, Smithsonian Affiliations is a national outreach program that develops long-term collaborative partnerships with museums, educational and cultural organizations to enrich communities with Smithsonian resources. The long-term goal of Smithsonian Affiliations is to facilitate a two-way relationship among Affiliate organizations and the Smithsonian Institution to increase discovery and inspire lifelong learning in communities across America. More information about the Smithsonian Affiliations program and Affiliate activity is available at>

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