Ariel creates unusual collaborations that infuse serendipity into science and space exploration. After unexpectedly getting a job at NASA after art school, her mission is to enlighten others on how anyone can actively contribute to the furthering of science and space exploration in clever new ways.

Ariel sits on the council for NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts, a program that nurtures radical, science-fiction-inspired ideas that could transform future space missions. She is the co-author of a congressionally-requested National Academy of Sciences report on the future of human spaceflight and the author of the book What’s It Like in Space?: Stories from Astronauts Who’ve Been There.

She is the founder of, a directory of ways for anyone to participate in space exploration, and the global director of  Science Hack Day, a grassroots endeavor to prototype things with science that is now in over 25 countries. She also built, a catalog of the active spacecrafts that freckle our solar system. In 2013, Ariel received an honor from the White House for being a Champion of Change in citizen science.
Unexpected Space Exploration

A talk about the weird, whimsical, and unexpected ways we can explore outer space. A rejection of nostalgia for the future.