Professor Anand Sivaramakrishnan
Department of Physics and Astronomy
American Museum of Natural History
7:30 pm Room 001 ESS Building
Friday, October 3, 2008

The James Webb Space Telescope: A First Light Machine

Hubble's successor, The 6.5m diameter James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), is a segmented-mirror, cold, unfolding infrared space telescope being built to peer through dust and gas clouds to capture the first light from newly-born galaxies, stars, and planets. Prof. Sivaramakrishnan will explain the kinds of cosmological, galactic, and local Solar neighborhood astronomy questions it will answer, how it is being designed and built for its intended science, and the technical challenges it must overcome in order to work properly. He will also explain why JWST is complementary to current 8-m and future 30-50 m ground-based telescopes.

Prof. Sivaramakrishnan has been an adjunct professor at Stony Brook since he moved to New York in 2005 to join the American Museum of Natural History's Astrophysics Department. He has worked on Hubble, Palomar, Gemini, and other telescopes' instruments. He also helped develop JWST, and is on the science team of one of its instruments. Prof. Sivaramakrishnan's instruments are dedicated to imaging planets and brown dwarfs outside our Solar System. He lives with his family in Huntington.