Renowned scientist and author Jeffrey Bennett to deliver lecture “What is Relativity?” Oct. 21 at Idaho State University

POCATELLO — Jeffrey Bennett – renowned astrophysicist, NASA scientist and author of bestselling college texts, critically acclaimed books for the general public and children’s books – will deliver the lecture “What is Relativity?” from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Oct. 21 in Room 140 of the Idaho State University Physical Science Building.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of Einstein’s completion of his “General Theory of Relativity.” Because some of the public knows very little about the critical importance of either the special or general theories to modern understanding of the universe, Bennett decided to put on the event.

In this presentation, based on his book, “What is Relativity?” from Columbia University Press, Bennett will introduce the audience to the basic ideas of Einstein’s theories and discuss why they are important to everyone. He’ll also help attendees understand the movie “Interstellar.” No prior knowledge of physics or relativity is needed to attend. The event is geared towards rookies in this field of study.

This presentation is part of Bennett’s “National Relativity Tour” in honor of a century of general relativity. His extensive experience includes teaching at every level from preschool through graduate school, proposing and helping to develop the “Voyage Scale Model Solar System” on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Bennett also has served two years as a visiting senior scientist at NASA Headquarters, where he helped create numerous programs designed to build stronger links between the research and education communities.

Bennett is the lead author of bestselling college textbooks in astronomy, astrobiology, mathematics and statistics. The titles of these critically acclaimed texts for the general public include “Beyond UFOs,” Princeton University Press 2008 and 2011; “Math for Life,” Big Kid Science 2014; “What is Relativity?” Columbia University Press, 2014; and “On Teaching Science,” Big Kid Science, 2014.

His first five books for children are currently orbiting Earth and being read by astronauts aboard the International Space Station for the new “Story Time from Space” program. More information can be found at His latest book, “I, Humanity,” will be launched to the International Space Station in December.

Bennett was recently honored with the American Institute of Physics Science Communication Award. His personal web site is Bennett will be available from 6:30 to 7 p.m. following the presentation for questions and book signing.

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