Jennifer Tong (Google), Wilfred Gee (Macquarie University / Project PANOPTES)
5:10pm–5:50pm Thursday, 05/19/2016
In Real Life
Location: Ballroom B
DescriptionExoplanets are planets that orbit stars other than our sun. Until now, exoplanet discovery was the exclusive domain of professional scientists: large observatories discovered the first exoplanets in the 1990s; in the 2000s, NASA built the $600 million Kepler space telescope and discovered over 1000 planets. PANOPTES, which combines inexpensive, off-the-shelf components with open source hardware and software to build a geographically dispersed array of small observing telescopes, brings exoplanet science to amateur astronomers and school students.
Jenny Tong, a developer advocate at Google, and Wilfred Gee, an astronomer from the University of Hawaii, demonstrate how open source can discover planets. Jenny and Wilfred explain what PANOPTES is made of, how it observes the sky, and how raw data turns into candidate planets. Come join us to prove that a worldwide team of open source observers is better than a single multimillion-dollar telescope. You too can discover planets around other stars.