Sheyene Gerardi

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Sheyene Gerardi (born April 13) is a Venezuelan former actress, television personality, mining executive, co-founder NASA´s Planetary Landing Team. She is the Lead of Robotics Outreach at NASA (CLASS). She has won the numerous awards for her work and charitable efforts. She earned a Ph.D. in Space resource utilization, subsequently she was granted the status of an individual with exceptional ability in the national interest. The National Interest status is the Nation’s highest civilian recognition, presented to individuals for achievements and significant contributions to the security, prosperity, and social wellbeing of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors. Sheyene founded the Sheyene Institute and operates two philanthropic organizations through the Sheyene Gerardi Foundation.


  • My motivations to be here today are driven by two compelling forces: the immense potential of AI and the urgent need for ethical and fair distribution. In the same way, space exploration offers great potential for economic growth; we can create industries in space, harnessing resources and developing technologies that benefit humanity. I believe these intersecting fields hold the key to solving most of the global challenges we face, from economic inequality to resource scarcity.[1]
  • I believe the critical challenge of AI is going to be in distribution rather than production. And this issue changes significantly when we consider robotics for industry in space. We have a great (but limited) opportunity during the bootstrapping period while human labor is still needed in the industry.
  • I envision a future where AI empowers individuals and communities, driving economic prosperity and social progress. I believe this future can be achieved through responsible development, focusing on ethical considerations, global participation, and fair distribution of benefits.
  • We have scientific evidence that we’ve entered the Anthropocene. Working together, all people, and shift to a new paradigm to find the solutions is really paramount.
  • We already convert sunlight into beamed energy and send it down to Earth. Except we use it to carry information rather than raw power. To deliver power requires a massive increase in scale, but not inventing new technology.
  • Science gives me hope. Not just because it’s inherently optimistic, but also because it’s a practical way of improving things.
  • My hero is a person whose general interests and values really drives them well beyond job security or even popularity.
  • Knowledge accumulates over time; it’s not just one person or one set of time but over many hundreds of years. That gives me hope.
  • The point of space mining is to allow access to materials for construction for space habitats, instead of shipping entire industries into space. Settlers on Earth always brought a starter set and bootstrapped the rest.
  • A lot is changing in the space industry every year and as machine learning advances and sophistication of robotic technology is refined even further. We can see there is a very feasible path forward.
  • 3D printing in space, and reusable launch vehicles are just a few of the developments that have emerged. Imagine the possibilities that are in our future when we go down this path and how we can benefit planet earth. This is the closest thing to have super powers.
  • The ability to manufacture cheap, nutritious 3D printed food, for instance, will not only help future astronauts explore deep space but could bring about substantial shifts towards the goal of eradicating global hunger.
  • Because space industry has such growth potential. It is vital to expand humanity’s participation to ensure a safe, healthy, and just planet.
  • There are 25,000 known "Near Earth Asteroids" which are much closer the Asteroid Belt. In fact we visited two of them, Ryugu and Bennu, and we are bringing back samples from both. In the mining industry we call this "prospecting".
  • Some asteroids are made of an iron-nickel-cobalt alloy. Others contain carbon. Combine those and you have steel alloy. A solar furnace can heat the mix to the point you can cast or roll it to shape. So structural parts are about the easiest thing to do.
  • I received chemotherapy for 3 years, and far from feeling as a victim, I can say it was a great learning experience for me, I have much to be thankful for in life.
  • Most people don't know I have been involved in the mining industry since I was born; I have expanded operations to work on the development of technologies for autonomous mining as part of my family business in Venezuela.
  • Every time I go I am always struggling to breathe, imagine the workers who spend hours everyday there. Half a million people get sick every year working in the mining sector. Robots can go deeper underground, to mine in extreme conditions that humans could not withstand, and of course robots can work 24 hours a day for continuous workflow.
  • What a country does affect all the others. The solution to our global problems requires a perspective that embraces the fact that we are all in this together. The silver lining is that is forcing us to act as universal species. That´s a terrifically exciting thing.
  • We’re not just dealing in willingness, humanity has to qualify to survive and it won’t depend on political or economic systems, but “the forces” pushing them to act. The universe is synergetic, life is synergetic. Don't fight forces, unite them.
  • I am convinced that it is possible for us to be united by our ideals, instead of divided by our differences.
    • Sheyene Gerardi (Sheyene Institute Founder´s letter, published 2020-07-09)
  • It is not the system that recreates a child’s life, but the people working within it, not because the system works but because there are people within the system who are willing to do whatever it takes to make sure that a child has everything he or she deserves.
  • There is so much to learn, but also so much to unlearn... And perhaps not surprisingly, even our approach to learning has changed.
  • Creating industry on the Moon and Mars and in space with asteroids is not rocket science; it is industrial engineering where we need to adapt existing technologies to a new environment.
  • Workers who don’t share ownership of the robots will be reduced to political powerlessness far worse than their conditions today. We have the opportunity to solve this problem during the bootstrapping period while human labor is still needed for space industry.
  • People, in general, are unaware of the danger they are in, that with no way to personally go into space, no need for their labor in the face of robotic artificial intelligence, and no way to gain an ownership share in the industry, they will be left behind both economically and politically, unless steps are taken during the startup period.

Quotes about Sheyene Gerardi[edit]

  • As a Senior Technical Marketing Engineer for over 18 years, I am deeply impressed by the value of the work that Sheyene is doing through her non-profit. She understands how to inspire people to not just love the subject matter, but to see the possibility of contributing to it in themselves through a few simple steps. This is a rare skill; you often get two of these at the same time, not all three.
  • I have been following with great interest Sheyene’s activities in organizing world-wide robotics competitions. Her vision for expanding the scope and the impact of space science and engineering outreach dovetails strongly with the objectives of the Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science. We are looking forward to working with Sheyene and are excited about the possibilities of the robotic competitions.

External links[edit]

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en:Sheyene Gerardi