The Science Behind the Art: Visualizing Astrophysics

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An artists impression of exoplanets.
It may be an "artist's interpretation," but that artist is also an astrophysicist (image credit: NASA/Robert Hurt).

When you read a scientific story in a popular blog or magazine, many times you will see the caveat "artist interpretation" next to some of the accompanying images. This as a gross undersell of the time, effort, and most important, accuracy, that goes into developing the renders. While we don't know what a black hole or an exoplanet looks like, it is important to attempt to visualize them, and to do it as accurately as possible. This video is an interview with two people who are responsible for many of the "artist interpretations" in NASA.

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The Science Behind the Art: Visualizing Astrophysics
NASA Spitzer
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Jesse Rogerson, PhD

Jesse is a passionate scientist, educator, and science communicator. As an assistant professor at York University in the Department of Science, Technology, and Society, he teaches three classes: History of Astronomy, Introduction to Astronomy, and Exploring the Solar System. He frequently collaborates with the Canada Aviation and Space Museum, and lends his expert voice to the Ingenium Channel. Jesse is an astrophysicist, and his research explores how super massive black holes evolve through time. Whether in the classroom, through social media, or on TV, he encourages conversations about how science and society intersect, and why science is relevant in our daily lives.