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Physics Department

Location: 180-204
Phone: (805) 756-2448
Fax: (805) 756-2435
Chair: Jennifer Klay

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Ross and Sue Benitez Space Exploration Forum 2022

illustration of James Webb Space Telescope

The Journey of the James Webb Space Telescope

Where we are and where we are going

Thursday, March 3, 7-8:30 p.m.
Online and Live in the Advanced Technology Laboratories (007-01)  
Free and open to the public

Register for the live event
Register for the online event

For more information call 805-756-2448

In late 2021, scientific innovation took the next step into space exploration and journey. The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) was launched into space on an Ariane 5 rocket from French Guiana. Webb will be the premier observatory of the next decade, serving thousands of astronomers and planetary scientist worldwide. It is an orbiting infrared observatory that will complement and extend the discoveries of the Hubble Space Telescope but with longer wavelength coverage and greatly improved sensitivity. It will study every phase in the history of our Universe, ranging from the first luminous glows after the Big Bang, to the formation of solar systems capable of supporting life on planets like Earth, to the evolution of our own Solar System. In this talk, Planetary Scientist Stefanie Milam will provide a status update of the Webb Telescope, briefly review the main science themes for JWST and conclude with some revolutionary science planned for the first year of operations. 


Stefanie Milam

Image of Stefanie Miliam

Stefanie Milam is a planetary scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland and serves as the James Webb Space Telescope Deputy Project Scientist for Planetary Science. She is an expert in rotational spectroscopy, observations, and laboratory modeling of astrochemistry and molecular astrophysics of the interstellar medium, evolved stars, star formation regions, protoplanetary disks, and comets with an emphasis on isotopic fractionation and astrobiology of primitive materials.

In 2014, Milam was appointed as the Webb Deputy Project Scientist for Planetary Science to continue her role through launch. She works through the Project Science Team as an in-house, planetary science expert to evaluate science and operations trades and design decisions that will be required to finalize Webb's solar system observing capabilities.

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