Dr. Michelle Thaller is an astronomer who studies binary stars and the life cycles of stars. She is Assistant Director of Science Communication at NASA. She went to college at Harvard University, completed a post-doctoral research fellowship at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena, Calif. then started working for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory's (JPL) Spitzer Space Telescope. After a hugely successful mission, she moved on to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC), in the Washington D.C. area. In her off-hours often puts on about 30lbs of Elizabethan garb and performs intricate Renaissance dances. For more information, visit NASA.
NASA's director of science communication explains why success and failure are vague, impractical metrics to give young people.
What can cause a ripple in both space and time? Neutron stars colliding. And what can observe that phenomenon? A two-mile-long laser.
Love being an intelligent, mobile, conscious being? Thank colliding neutron stars. They created all the gold in the universe, including the gold atoms that your brain can't function without.
If there’s other intelligent life in the universe, is it very different from us, or is it very similar? First we have to know where our species is headed, says NASA's Michelle Thaller.