Bro. Guy J. Consolmagno, S.J.: ‘Why Do We Look Up at the Heavens,’ with Director of Vatican Observatory

Date(s) - November 22, 2017
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Hebb Theatre

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Join Astronomer and Jesuit brother Guy Consolmagno as he tackles questions such as “Why did we go to the moon?” and “Why does the Vatican support an astronomical observatory?”

Bro. Guy J. Consolmagno, S.J.

In 2015, Pope Francis appointed Jesuit brother Guy Consolmagno as the new Director of the Vatican Observatory, founded by Pope Leo XIII in 1891.

On the work conducted at the Observatory, Br. Consolmagno writes “All the science we do, and all the outreach we do, reflects a quality that motivates everything we do in astronomy: a sense of joy. The stars are glorious, and it’s a treat to be engaged in their study. Their glory proclaims the Glory of their Creator!”

Br. Consolmagno obtained his Bachelor of Science in 1974 and Master of Science in 1975 in Earth and Planetary Sciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and his Ph.D. in Planetary Science from the University of Arizona in 1978. From 1978-80 he was a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer at the Harvard College Observatory, and from 1980-1983 continued as postdoc and lecturer at MIT. In 1983 he left MIT to join the US Peace Corps, where he served for two years in Kenya teaching physics and astronomy. He took vows as a Jesuit brother in 1991.

Br. Consolmagno’s research explores the connections between meteorites and asteroids, and the origin and evolution of small bodies in the solar system. In 1996, he spent six weeks collecting meteorites with an NSF-sponsored team on the blue ice of Antarctica, and in 2000 he was honored by the IAU for his contributions to the study of meteorites and asteroids with the naming of asteroid 4597 Consolmagno.

Background excerpts from the Vatican Observatory website.

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