Devin hosted a planetarium show on the roof of the Mathematical Sciences Building on April 26th. Over 60 people showed up, filled all the 50 seats, and left little place on the floor. The dome of the planetarium was a perfect screen to project the starry night sky, and for a moment it was as if the audience are watching the milky way directly from a desert camp.
The UCLA planetarium is operated and maintained primarily by UCLA Astronomy graduate students, and shows are presented voluntarily by students. Devin is a third-year Astronomy PhD student. He fell in love with the night sky early from his childhood in Hawaii. Devin joined UCLA after his undergrad at Dartmouth, and studies the stars around the black hole.
Astronomy observations demand extremely clear weather, which is why most telescopes at the US locate in Hawaii and Arizona. Devin’s research takes him to the Keck telescopes in Hawaii every summer. The Hawaii trip is the highlight of Devin’s graduate experience, as he has the chance to collect large amount of high quality data for his research, and to spend summer with his family.
Devin was also excited to see many astronomical technologies find their way to our everyday life. Many high-resolution cameras developed for telescopes are now used for medical imaging. Meanwhile, more advanced technologies are continuously created to allow observation of celestial body much farther away. By exploring the space around us, we get to better understand the existence of the earth and human beings.