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Sunday, April 28 • 12:00pm - 12:50pm
Hubble 2020 - Steering HST into the Next Decade

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SPECIAL:  Black Hole Update
Carolyn Collins Petersen and Ken Carpenter
Black holes play big roles in science fiction, and astronomers know they really do exist in real life.  Not only do we see evidence of them in Hubble images, but most recently, a virtual telescope the size of planet Earth observed a massive one in the heart of a distant galaxy. The image of that black hole is the first-ever direct view of the event horizon around a black hole. Come find out the latest news about this image, what it tells us about black holes, and the Event Horizon Telescope that gathered the data!

When the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) was launched in April 1990, it had a design lifetime of 15 years. Thanks to both good design and construction (let’s not talk about that pesky mirror – after all, we fixed that!) and to a series of 5 post-deployment servicing missions, the operational lifetime has been extended from 15 to 20 to 25 years and beyond. We now expect HST to last well into the 2020’s and provide complementary ultraviolet and optical observations to the primarily infrared observations of at least the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) after its launch in 2021, and possibly of the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST), which is scheduled for launch in the mid-2020’s. Dr. Carpenter will discuss the current health and scientific capabilities of HST and how the HST Project is managing it, via “life-extension initiatives”, special observing programs/strategies, and other means, to ensure viability well into the 2020’s, without excessively limiting current science productivity – a trade that is complex and difficult – though not impossible for true “rocket scientists”!

avatar for Carolyn Collins Petersen

Carolyn Collins Petersen

Science Writer, Documentarian, Loch Ness Productions
Carolyn Collins Petersen is CEO of Loch Ness Productions (www.lochnessproductions.com), a fulldome production company and organizer of ScienceFest. She is an award-winning science writer, with more than three dozen documentaries to her credit. Her latest book is "The Discovery of the Universe: A History of Astronomy and Observatories". She has written or co-written... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Kenneth Carpenter

Dr. Kenneth Carpenter

Scientist, Hubble Space Telescope, NASA
Dr. Kenneth Carpenter is the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Operations Project Scientist and the Ground Systems Project Scientist for the Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland and a member of Goddard's “Exoplanets... Read More →

Sunday April 28, 2019 12:00pm - 12:50pm MDT
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