Physics Students Study Stars at Chile Observatory

Chile Telescope 1
Chile Telescope 2

Tyler Hockett, Aaron Marlowe and Eugene Filik in the Andes Mountains

HIGH POINT, N.C., July 28, 2014 – A group of High Point University physics students are back from Chile with an incredible experience under their belt and the potential of being published by the end of the year.

Eugene Filik, Aaron Marlowe and Tyler Hockett joined Dr. Brad Barlow, assistant professor of astrophysics, on an excursion to the Andes Mountains to observe stars with the SMARTS telescope at the Cerro Tololo International Observatory, one of the most well-known observing sites for professional astronomers in the world.

While at the observatory, they worked with researchers at West Virginia University to observe a potential binary pulsar system, and they plan to submit their findings to a peer-reviewed journal soon.

 

Marlowe, Hockett, Dr. Brad Barlow, assistant professor of astrophysics, and Filik stand next to the 4.2-meter SOAR telescope.

Marlowe, Hockett, Dr. Brad Barlow, assistant professor of astrophysics, and Filik stand next to the 4.2-meter SOAR telescope.

“This experience broadened my horizons to the field of astronomy,” says rising sophomore Eugene Filik. “Since this trip I am much more interested in astronomy and am thinking about concentrating in that field. I will also get recognition in a scientific journal for the research we helped with, which will help establish me as a productive member in the world of physics.”

“These students gained experiences that are relatively hard to come by as undergraduates,” says Barlow. “They operated a professional, research-grade telescope on their own, interacted with various astronomers at an international observatory and learned how to interpret astronomical data on the fly.”

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