Priscilla Strain first joined the Center for Earth and Planetary Studies (CEPS) in 1974 to work under a NASA grant to study the photography of the Moon collected by the Apollo missions. At the completion of these studies, she undertook the development of the Looking at Earth exhibition, a major gallery devoted to the science and history of aerial and orbital imagery of the Earth. As Program Manager, she works with exhibits and outreach programs that inform the public on topics of planetary science and exploration, and that bring the work of CEPS to the public.
During her career at the Air and Space Museum, she has conducted research in the fields of lunar and terrestrial remote sensing. She is the author, jointly with Frederick Engle, of Looking at Earth, a book of satellite imagery of the world that has been published in seven languages. For many years, she was the curator for the lunar rocks on display at the Museum. She is the lead curator for the new Kenneth C. Griffin Exploring the Planets gallery and is a supporting curator on the team covering the common public areas that are all being reimagined as part of the major project to transform the entire National Air and Space Museum.
Public programs that she has coordinated include:
Mars Day! On this popular family day, a variety of activities are presented, and the public can interact one-on-one with CEPS scientists to learn about Mars science and exploration. Every fifth year, in Apollo anniversary years, the topic switches to the Moon with Discover the Moon Day.
Geography From Space — A fun activity conducted online during National Geography Awareness Week. Participants learn about remote sensing and geography by trying to identify geographic features on satellite images.
Exploring Space Lecture Series— Curated by CEPS in alternate years, this lecture series brings distinguished lecturers in the fields of space science and history to NASM. Lectures are recorded and can be viewed online through the Museum's Webcast Archive.