About this Page

A Bit About the Structure of the Website . . .

This page was designed in Spring 2013 as part of a final project completed for a class on the interstellar medium (ISM) at Harvard University taught by Alyssa Goodman.  Most introductory astronomy courses never cover the ISM, skipping over it in favor of stellar and planetary evolution or galaxies and cosmology.  However, understanding the ISM is vital to truly understand how stars and planets form and how galaxies evolve.  Thus, the goal of this project is to provide an introduction to how beautiful and fascinating the ISM can be.  For the full experience please refer to the WorldWideTelescope tour I created as well.  Pages on this website provide more information about the images displayed and the topics discussed in the tour.  Refer here to answer any of your ISM physics and astronomy questions!

A Bit About the Level of the Website …

Don’t be scared away if you are not familiar with astronomy!  The narration for the WorldWide Telescope tour is written at a level accessible to the public.  You should be able to understand everything included in the tour without having any previous knowledge of the subject.  If you are a more advanced student of astronomy, this website is meant to fill in all of the additional details and physical explanations you might be curious about.  Whenever a more complicated topic is mentioned or hinted at in the tour, hyperlinks will direct you to a specific page on this website.  Those pages explain the nuances of that topic at a higher level than is included in the tour.  The goal of splitting the information up in this way is to allow people to interact with this project and explore the ISM at whatever level they feel most comfortable with.

An additional note: If you watch the tour and have further questions, don’t hesitate to comment and ask for an explanation.  I’ll try and follow-up as quickly as possible!  This website is not a fixed entity.  It can evolve to reflect what viewers are most interested in learning more about!

pah_spitzer

A Bit About the Author . . .

I am currently a second-year graduate student at Harvard University.  My primary research interests are the evolution of circumstellar disks and the formation of planetary systems. Much of my research makes use of instruments like the Submillimeter Array (SMA), the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA), and the Jansky Very Large Array (JVLA). As a result, I am also interested in looking more into dust and grain dynamics and the techniques of radio interferometry.  If you want to know a bit more about me, check out my webpage:

https://www.cfa.harvard.edu/~mmacgreg/index.html

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