On June 14, 2018, the SETI Institute will recognize Victoria S. Meadows with the 2018 Drake Award in celebration of her contributions to the field of astrobiology and her work as a researcher, leader and inspiration for everyone working in her field.
Read the full story at SETI.
Three University of Washington undergraduates are among 211 students nationwide named as 2018 Goldwater Scholars. The Barry Goldwater Scholarships are awarded to students who have outstanding potential and plan to pursue research careers in mathematics, natural sciences or engineering. Tyler Valentine, who is from Washington, is majoring in Astronomy, Earth and space sciences. He plans to pursue a doctorate in space science and engineering focused on using the resources of near-Earth space.
Read the full story at UW News.
UW graduate student Kathryn Neugent is lead author on a new paper describing the discovery of a yellow supergiant star in the Small Magellanic Cloud that is moving at a whopping 300,000 miles an hour. From the Lowell Observatory press release:
The runaway star (designated J01020100-7122208) is loca…
UW Astronomy Professor Andy Connolly has been appointed to the Johns Hopkins University Society of Scholars. The Society of Scholars, established in 1967, inducts former postdoctoral fellows, postdoctoral degree recipients, house staff, and junior or visiting faculty who have gained marked distincti…
October 23, 2018 at 12:00 PM Venue: eScience seminar room (6th Floor) Speaker: Kathryn McKeough (Harvard)
Astronomers are interested in delineating boundaries of extended sources in noisy images. An example is finding outlines of a jet in a distant quasar. This is particularly difficult for jets in high redshift, X-ray images where there are a limited number of pixel counts. Using Low-counts Image Reconstruction and Analysis (LIRA), Stein et al. 2015 and McKeough et al. 2016 propose and apply a method where jets are detected using previously defined regions of interest (ROI). LIRA, a Bayesian multi-scale image reconstruction, has been tremendously successful in analyzing low count images and extracting noisy structure. However, we do not always have supplementary information to predetermine ROI and the size and shape can greatly affect flux/luminosity. LIRA is also unaware of correlations that may exist between adjacent pixels in the real image. In order to group similar pixels, we impose a successor or post-model on the output of LIRA. We adopt the Ising model as a prior on assigning the pixels to either the background or the ROI. From the posterior of this model, we are able to delineate probabilistic boundaries. This method has been applied to the jet data as well as simulations and appears to be capable of picking out meaningful ROIs.
October 24, 2018 at 7:00 PM Venue: Peddler Brewing Company Speaker:
THIS MONTH we will be joined by Rudy Garcia, who will speak about the spooky Fermi Paradox, or why we seem to be alone in the cosmos. We’ll also hear from Daniela Huppenkothen on how to teach an artificial intelligence to study black holes. Don’t miss this extra-scary October Astronomy on Tap!
This month we are excited to again be hosted by Peddler Brewing Company in their large beer garden. Bring lawn chairs if you’d like to to make your own front-row seating! There will be a food truck at the event, but outside food is also welcome.
Each FREE Astronomy on Tap event features accessible, engaging science presentations on topics ranging from planets to black holes to the beginning of the Universe. Most events have games and prizes to test and reward your new-found knowledge! There is always lots of time to ask questions and interact with the presenters and other scientists who inevitably stick around for the beer.