The Golden Record: NASA's Voyager Disc 40 Years On

In 1977, NASA launched two spacecraft on a mission to explore the outer planets of our solar system. Aboard each was a gold plated disc containing images, sounds and music intended to communicate the diversity of life and culture on earth to any extraterrestrial it might encounter. 40 years later, the Voyagers continue to operate in interstellar space – the most distant human-made objects from earth.

This presentation explores how and why the Golden Record was conceived, what the disc contains, and its lasting cultural significance. Together with Minh Le, an Information Science Specialist from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (the agency that designed, built and operated the Voyagers) we’ll discover what NASA hoped to achieve by including the record on board, as well as the challenges the team faced. The session offers the chance to grasp a unique perspective on the role of music in interpreting and communicating human culture, and inspiration to think big when it comes to reaching your audience.