Dr. Joan Centrella of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center will be presenting a public lecture on Wednesday, April 25, 2018, at 7 pm in G-09 White Hall on the downtown WVU campus.
The title of the talk is Frontiers of Astrophysics: How Discoveries Can Change Our Lives. The frontiers of astrophysics are driven forward by the power of ideas and discoveries. The lecture will focus on three exciting areas: the search for exoplanets and life in the universe; revealing the dark side of the universe with gravitational waves; and probing farther back in time with new telescopes. In addition to the scientific achievements, Dr. Centrella will also discuss how knowledge from these areas of astrophysics can impact how we think and live.
Dr. Centrella received her PhD from Cambridge University, where she was a pioneer in numerical relativity simulations of gravitational waves. In 2001 she moved to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center to join their newly-formed gravitational wave astrophysics group. From 2004 to 2010 she was Chief of the Gravitational Astrophysics Laboratory, which encompasses the gravitational wave and theoretical astrophysics groups at Goddard. From 2010-2017, she was the Deputy Director of the Astrophysics Science Division. A special focus during her tenure as Deputy was the development, review, and approval of new research projects and missions in a variety of areas. She enjoys the privilege of working with scientists and missions that span astrophysics from galaxies to black holes, and from exoplanets to the first whispers of the universe.
The lecture is being sponsored by WVU's Center for Gravitational Waves and Cosmology and the Department of Physics and Astronomy.