Astronomy

Art Meets Science at Next Maunakea Skies Talk

December 10, 2017, 10:00 AM HST
* Updated December 8, 2:50 PM
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Scientists are teaming up with artists to create vivid images that help us understand complex astronomical discoveries. Learn more about these works of art at ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center’s next Maunakea Skies talk with Dr. Gordon K. Squires, Lead of Communications, Education and Public Outreach at the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT). The talk will be held on Friday, Dec. 15, at 7 p.m.

During his presentation, Dr. Squires will demonstrate how his team creates visualizations to illustrate groundbreaking scientific discoveries. One example will include the recent detection of gravitational waves generated by a neutron star merger earlier this year. Additionally, Dr. Squires will explore how his team combined art and science to visualize the TRAPPIST-1 discovery earlier this year, a unique planetary system with three exoplanets.

These discoveries require many telescopes and facilities on Earth working in partnership. Dr. Squires will highlight the role of multi-observatory science, and discuss the contributions that TMT will provide for these and other astrophysical phenomena.

A Kilonova, neutron star collision: the predicted source of all gold in the universe. Kilonovae were theoretical and not observed until earlier this year when scientists detected gravitational waves from such an event at 130 million light years away.

In addition to his role at TMT, Dr. Squires is a co-investigator in NASA’s Science Mission Directorate (SMD) Science Activation program called Universe of Learning. He received his Ph.D. in Astrophysics from the University of Toronto in 1995 and was awarded the Doctoral Prize by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council for the most outstanding Ph.D. thesis in Canada and the Plaskett Medal by the Canadian Astronomical Society for the most outstanding thesis in astronomy, both in 1995.

‘Imiloa’s monthly Maunakea Skies program includes observational highlights of the current night sky over Hawai‘i, with an audience viewing of currently visible constellations and stars.

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Maunakea Skies planetarium presentations are held on the third Friday of each month. General admission tickets are $10, $8 for ‘Imiloa members (member level discounts apply). Pre-purchase tickets at ‘Imiloa’s front desk or by calling (808) 932-8901.

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