Dr. Andrea Banzatti to use James Webb Space Telescope (JWST)
Dr. Andrea Banzatti, Assistant Professor in the Texas State University Department of Physics, has been awarded prestigious observatory time on the NASA James Webb Space Telescope (JWST). JWST is the new flagship infrared telescope of NASA to study exoplanets and distant galaxies: https://www.jwst.nasa.gov/index.html. The telescope has been successfully launched on December 25th of 2021, and is now on his way to the L2 Lagrangian point where it will start science observations after testing and commissioning of all instruments: https://www.jwst.nasa.gov/content/webbLaunch/whereIsWebb.html?units=metric. The prestigious award to our Texas State research team will provide funding and 19 hours of JWST time in the very first cycle of observations to start in Summer of 2022. With this program, Dr. Banzatti and his team, including postdoctoral researcher Dr. Anusha Kalyaan and several students, will use infrared spectra to study how water and other molecules are delivered to exoplanets that are forming around other stars, to understand the chemical makeup of other planetary systems and how conditions for life may develop elsewhere in the Universe.