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Dr. Edward Belbruno

Astrophysical Sciences

Princeton University

In the early 1990's a spacecraft reached the Moon on a totally new type of pathway. By utilizing the subtle gravitational tugs and pulls of the Earth, Moon and Sun, a path was found that utilized the instabilities due to chaos. This approach makes use of unusual boundaries between stable and unstable motion, called weak stability boundaries, and it is having a significant impact on space travel. The same ideas can be successfully applied to problems in astronomy, such as the origin of our Moon. The underlying geometry of these regions is now being better understood showing complicated