In recent years, great advances have been made in understanding the evolution of the universe, our solar system, and our planet. These involve spacecraft, telescopes, and computer simulations that test our theories. When the Earth was finally ready, life arose, but it took another four billion years before it was suitable for plants and animals. These amazing events can now be told as a logical story, complete with some computer-generated video clips. Finally, a new but still unproven theory of the Big Bang promises to answer several long-standing mysteries. 

Dwight Jennison received his PhD in theoretical physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. His 30-year career at Sandia National Labs involved basic research in theoretical physics. Jennison has been a docent at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History for 14 years, covering all science relevant to museum content. He is past president of the museum’s volunteer association and represents space science on its board.