• IPAC

Summer Visit - 2012 - HR4AGN

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 HR4AGN team came to visit in August 2012. The core team educators attended, plus 12 students, and one additional scientist.  The scientist mentor is Dr. Varoujan Gorjian. IPAC staff member Jacob Llamas (SSC) assisted, as did Dr. Jean-Christophe Mauduit (SSC).


  • I spend a fair amount of time, just looking, enjoying, and observing the night sky. I have always thought that professionals somehow "use" the data that is generated by the bigger telescopes but our project has really given me a glimpse into the process, and how complicated that process can be. I can say that my respect for the professionals has increased quite a bit, especially given how hard a seemingly simple question can be to answer.
  • I hadn't realized astronomers spent so much time analyzing data (thought it was more automated) but after analyzing the data myself, I feel I have a better understanding of the analysis job, what it entails, and why humans must do it.
  • More gets done in this week than in all the rest of the prior time leading up to the trip.
  • My only impression of astronomers before this were essentially people in lab coats in a white lab looking at images from a large telescope, but that perception has changed greatly.
  • [student:] I now think more about the universe and the vast information you can learn about it.

Summer Visit - 2012 - HR4AGN