Benjamin Burress has been a staff astronomer at Chabot Space & Science Center since July 1999. He graduated from Sonoma State University in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in physics (and minor in astronomy), after which he signed on for a two-year stint in the Peace Corps, where he taught physics and mathematics in the African nation of Cameroon. From 1989-96 he served on the crew of NASA’s Kuiper Airborne Observatory at Ames Research Center in Mountain View, CA. From 1996-99, he was Head Observer at the Naval Prototype Optical Interferometer program at Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, AZ.
Read his previous contributions to QUEST, a project dedicated to exploring the Science of Sustainability.
Supernova SN2011fe, nearby in the galaxy M-101, is the first stellar explosion of its type to be observed in decades, and offers astronomers a valuable opportunity to refine our understanding of the size and expansion of the Universe.
Somewhere out there, at the most distant reaches of space and time, a vast space-ocean with 140 trillion times more water than the drop that fills Earth's ocean basins is pouring down the drain of a super black hole.
We are soon to explore a new world, one that we haven't seen up close before: the asteroid Vesta. What will we find, and why are we even interested in what amounts to a mega-mountain of rock hurtling through space?
When NASA's Space Shuttle Endeavour lifted off on its 25th and final mission to space on Monday morning, it carried a bus-sized, two billion dollar observatory that will probe some of our Universe's deepest, darkest secrets: dark matter, and the unaccounted antimatter.