• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2014 - SIRXS

The summer visit to Caltech is 3-4 days long and is the only time during the year of work when all the participants on the team come together in person to work intensively on the data. Generally, each educator may bring up to two students to the summer visit that are paid for by NITARP, and they may raise funds to bring two more. The teams work at Caltech; the summer visit typically includes a half-day tour of JPL, which is a favorite site for group photos. Reload to see a different set of quotes.

The SIRXS team came to visit in July 2014. The core team educators attended, plus 11 students.



  • [student:] The best part [of the trip] was seeing how the project changed so much over just a few days. Although our end goal was the same, our process to reach that goal was changed in those few days. From things as simple as just finding new ways to cut down the source count from the SEIP to things as radical as finding a brand new program online to sort the data, the project was constantly evolving.
  • I already understood, intellectually, that modern astronomy can involve computers more than it does telescopes. Public archives, however, are new to me. I think I could never fully appreciate that cutting-edge research could be fully accomplished simply by downloading public files from the internet without having fully participated in the whole process. Now I appreciate the depth and enormity of the Spitzer archives. This resource truly democratizes astronomical research!
  • We also came across some problems in our data base as we worked and had to stop, problem solve, and keep going. And collaborating. Without that piece, this project would be almost impossible to do alone.
  • [student:] The most valuable lesson I took from the NITARP summer visit was how to successfully collaborate with a large group of people.
  • For me, the most important aspect of our trip was not only nailing down the details of our project, but being invited to participate in all of those decisions.

Summer Visit - 2014 - SIRXS