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Former NASA Astronomer to Speak on the Universe

(Posted March 18, 2002)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Nancy Roman, retired astronomer for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), who was extensively involved in space astronomy and the development of the Hubble Space Telescope, will talk at Juniata College on "The Untranquil Universe" at 7:30 p.m. March 21 at Alumni Hall in the Brumbaugh Science Center on the Juniata campus.

The event is free and open to the public.

Roman, who was responsible for NASA's astronomical satellites such as the Hubble Telescope and Cosmic Background Explorer, will talk about how the night sky appears to be an unchanging field of stars. In reality, the universe is always changing and can be anything but peaceful. Stars such as the sun can shoot gases at temperatures of more than 1 million degrees Fahrenheit more than 1 million miles into space. Entire galaxies can collide, creating new stars, evidence of which can be seen through telescopes and other astronomical devices.

Roman started her stargazing career at the Yerkes Observatory at the University of Chicago, where she conducted research on the brightness of stars and other stellar phenomena. She left to take a job working with radio telescopes at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory.

She started her NASA career shortly after the federal space agency came into being. In addition to her work with the Hubble and other telescopes, she also led a research program of ground-based and rocket research during her time at NASA.

After retiring from the space agency, Roman worked as a consultant at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center until 1997. She continues to volunteer in educational outreach at the Goddard Center.

Roman's lecture is sponsored by the Shapley Lecture Series and the Juniata College Department of Physics.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.