Summer Research Institute Uses GBO

Friday, August 7, 2020 - 4pm


The Summer Research Institute is a 38-year old tradition in the Chemical Physics Laboratory at Concordia University. "I was not about to abandon that tradition because of COVID-19", remarked the leader of the institute, Professor John Kenney. This summer the institute pivoted to be online and used the remote, robotic GBO for an astronomical research component.

The 2020 CUI Summer Research Institute resulted in the successful activation and utilization of the speckle interferometry system, a method of observation that can be used to investigate stars that orbit very closely together and cannot be seen clearly through standard techniques. This has allowed students to study star systems that most terrestrial observatories are not able to see and to measure and solve for parameters that have never been done before.

"Thanks to the incredible asset that is the GBO, these opportunities are not only open to our students but to any student or organization that wishes to work with these systems at the world-class research observatory: the GBO", reported Cole Niebuhr, the GBO Astronomy Research program lead.

Six students (pictured above) worked on double-star observation and research. They are from left to right:

Ruth Larson, a Senior, double majoring in Mathematics and Physics

Joshua Jacobsen, a Sophomore majoring in Physics

Savannah Winchel, a Junior, majoring in Biology

Andrew Lee, a High School Senior

Issac Munoz, a Sophomore majoring in Physics