Public Star Night – Friday, January 19, 2024 – Dr. Gregory Wirth

Public Star Night – Friday, January 19, 2024

            Little Thompson Observatory

                    Doors Open:  7:00 | Guest Speaker:  7:30-8:30 | Observing at LTO: 8:30-10:00

NOTE: Speaker presentation will be in the Berthoud High School Auditorium

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope: The Engineering Marvel Unveiling the Infrared Universe

A special presentation by 

Dr. Gregory Wirth

From unveiling the secrets of nearby planets to exploring the earliest galaxies, the new James Webb Space Telescope has become an unparalleled “discovery machine” for astronomers.  Dr. Gregory Wirth, a scientist and engineer who helped commission JWST, presents an evening of treats for the mind and the eye describing how NASA’s latest hi-tech marvel is revolutionizing modern astronomy. This talk coves the technological advances that make JWST so powerful and shares some of the most exciting findings the mission has generated during its first two years in space. Greg will also preview NASA’s next great space observatory: the Roman Space Telescope, which will image exoplanets and seek evidence of Dark Matter and Dark Energy when launched in 2027.

Dr. Wirth is an avid astronomer with a passion for sharing his love of space with the public. He studied physics, math, and astronomy at Northwestern University before earning his Ph.D. in Astronomy & Astrophysics from the University of California, Santa Cruz, where his thesis exploited early data from the Hubble Space Telescope. Greg spent 16 years on Hawaii’s Big Island at the renowned W. M. Keck Observatory in Hawaii and has lived in Longmont since 2014.  He now serves as an astronomer and systems engineer for Boulder-based Ball Aerospace, a leading American aerospace company with a long history of contributing to groundbreaking astrophysics missions like Hubble, Spitzer, Chandra, and Deep Impact.


Following the talk by Greg, the observatory will be open for public viewing through our telescopes, weather permitting.

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