Physics Colloquium: Jackie Faherty, Tales in stellar motion
Tales in stellar motion
Senior Scientist & Senior Education Manager
American Museum of Natural History, New York, NY
With today's astrometric precision of parallaxes and proper motions we have an unprecedented view of the dynamical history of our solar neighborhood down to the lowest mass stars. Complimented by hard sought efforts of a citizen science project called Backyard Worlds and its extended scientific team, we also have precise distances and motions for brown dwarfs in the solar neighborhood into the planetary mass regime. Examining the sample of high to low mass stars, brown dwarfs and planets as a whole, I will summarize what we can glean about the low mass cut-off of the star formation process. I will also highlight kinematic targets of interest, as well as a vantage point in the sky that gives some stars a perfect viewing angle to detect Earth as a transiting planet for many years into the future.
Dr. Jackie Faherty received her bachelors degree in Physics from the University of Notre Dame and her PhD in Physics from Stony Brook University. Post PhD, she spent two years at the Universidad de Chile on a National Science Foundation International Research Fellowship (NSF-IRFP) and three years at the Carnegie Institution for Science on a NASA Hubble Fellowship. She is now a permanent scientific staff member jointly in the department of Astrophysics and the department of Education at the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH). Dr. Faherty co-runs a dynamic research group at AMNH entitled Brown Dwarfs in New York City (BDNYC) along leading scientists Dr. Kelle Cruz of CUNY Hunter College and Dr. Emily Rice of CUNY Macaulay Honors College. Her team has won multiple grants from NASA, NSF, and the Heising Simons foundation to support projects focused on characterizing planet-like objects. She has also co-founded the popular citizen science project entitled Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 which invites the general public to help scan the solar neighborhood for previously missed cold worlds. Faherty has over 100 peer reviewed articles in Astrophysical journals, has been an invited speaker at University’s and conferences across the globe and is a major advocate for utilizing visualization tools for both science and education advancements. Aside from a love of scientific research, Dr. Faherty is a passionate educator and can often be found giving public lectures in the Hayden Planetarium. She holds a unique position at the American Museum of Natural History that allows her to pursue scientific research at the forefront of exoplanet characterization studies while mentoring and advising education programs for students and general public alike.
Infrared Astrometry; Proper Motion survey for nearby brown brown dwarfs in the galactic plane, Parallax Survey of brown dwarfs within 30 parsecs showing spectral features of youth