Theme of May 11 Cosmic Cocktail Hour is James Webb Space Telescope: Searching for Our Origins in Stars and Galaxies
NASA's James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), successfully launched on Christmas day 2021, is the farthest seeing telescope humankind has ever built and will usher in a new age of discovery in astrophysics, astronomy and planetary science.
For the Carnegie Observatories Cosmic Cocktail Hour presented by the Pasadena Senior Center on Wednesday, May 11, at 4 p.m. via Zoom, Dr. Alan Dressler will review the history of the JWST project, the challenges faced by thousands of engineers and scientists and the success to date in activating and calibrating the telescope and spacecraft. A Q&A period will follow the presentation.
Several Carnegie astronomers will be among the first to lead projects using data from JWST observations. Their planned investigations will span the breadth of expertise at Carnegie Observatories and its Earth and Planets Laboratory – from experiencing the makeup of distant worlds to revealing the secrets of ancient galaxies and seeking answers to cosmological questions.
Dressler is staff scientist/astronomer emeritus for Carnegie Observatories where he has devoted his career and beyond to the study of galaxy evolution, changes in galaxy structure and form, and the pace and nature of star birth. Even before the Hubble Space Telescope launched in 1990 with its 7.8-foot mirror, Dressler chaired a Carnegie committee that proposed a "next generation space telescope" that would be a successor to Hubble and powerful enough to see the first stars and galaxies that existed in the universe. The committee called on NASA to fund and create what would become the James Webb Space Telescope, which will travel a distance of one million miles from Earth while Hubble is 340 miles from earth. Dressler earned his bachelor's degree in physics at UC Berkeley in 1970 and his PhD in astronomy at UC Santa Cruz in 1976.
The cost of Cosmic Cocktail Hour is only $7 for members of the Pasadena Senior Center and $10 for nonmembers 50 and older. To register, visit www.pasadenaseniorcenter.org and click on Lectures & Classes, then Cosmic Cocktail Hour or call 626-795-4331.
Then pour your favorite beverage on May 11, sit back and enjoy the astronomical trip.
Everyone who registers will receive an email link to access this Zoom event. Pasadena Senior Center membership is not required, and participants do not have to live in Pasadena.