Perth astrophysicist gets help on his quest to measure galaxies with the James Webb Space Telescope

Astrophysicist Robin Cook had a strong desire to understand the world around him since he was a child.

“It was never enough to take things at face value… I’ve always wanted to know how things worked on the inside,” he stated.

This inherent interest drove him to pursue a career studying space and its unknowns.

“It’s hardly unexpected that I automatically gravitated towards astronomy,” he remarked.

“And for me, that’s really exciting.”

“There are so many unanswered questions in astronomy, we actually have quite a limited knowledge of what’s actually out there.

Looking at the ‘beautiful spirals’ of galaxies
Dr Cook is a research associate at the International Center for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR), run by Curtin University and the University of Western Australia.

Founded in 2009, the research center undertakes data-intensive astronomy, engineering and science.

Dr Cook’s area of ​​research within ICRAR is on the evolution of galaxies, more specifically the structure of these galaxies. “My specific area of ​​research looks at … the shapes of galaxies, whether they’re these beautiful spirals, like our own Milky Way galaxy, or these massive elliptical mosh-pit-like galaxies, and galaxies have these different structures, these different shapes ,” he said.

Dr. Cook’s research process beings with asking questions. “How can you go from a universe that started off as just clouds of hydrogen gas, the simplest element in the universe and then allowing 10 billion years of evolution, having galaxies with enormous amounts of structure and complexity?” hey ask

“How do you go from something so simple to something so complex?” His role in developing the understanding of galaxy evolution is in measuring them, a task that he says can be challenging.

“Measuring the numbers and quantifying the shapes of galaxies is a really important thing and quite a difficult thing to do, so we spend a lot of time measuring them and … comparing them to different aspects of the galaxy and trying to understand ultimately, their evolution ,” he said.

News Summary:

  • Perth astrophysicist gets help on his quest to measure galaxies with the James Webb Space Telescope
  • Check all news and articles from the latest Space news updates.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.