Artist rendering of the Nancy Roman Space Telescope. Credit: NASA
A University of Hawaiʻi astronomer is part of a team of experts recently awarded $11 million to face the daunting challenge of designing software for NASA’s next-generation space telescope. David Rubin, assistant professor at the UH Department of Physics and Astronomy, will co-lead the team to develop software that can process thousands of supernovae images researchers expect to capture using the Nancy Roman Space Telescope. Set to launch in 2027, the Roman Telescope will peer deeper into space than ever before exploring the infrared spectrum of the universe, seeking out habitable planets, and uncovering the secrets of dark matter and dark energy.
“Roman will revolutionize our understanding of the universe with its unprecedented volume and quality of data,” Rubin said. “But with all that data comes strict requirements on the accuracy of the software. That makes for an exciting project, but it is also intimidating.”