Meeting Information

Fermi’s Decade of Observing the Extreme Universe

September 20, 2018
American Center for Physics
College Park, MD

Date: Thursday, September 20, 2018 (This date has been changed from September 19th to September 20th)

Speaker: Dr. Elizabeth Ferrara, Deputy Lead Scientist, Fermi Science Support Center, UMD

Topic: Fermi’s Decade of Observing the Extreme Universe

Time and Location: 1:00 p.m., with Q&A to follow in a 1st floor conference room at the American Center for Physics (, 1 Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD — off River Rd., between Kenilworth Ave. and Paint Branch Parkway.

Abstract: Ten years ago, on June 11, 2008, NASA launched a new observatory designed to detect photons more powerful than any previously observed in space. The Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope studies a universe that is filled with violent phenomena: stars that collide and explode, black holes that feed on gas funneled to the centers of distant galaxies, and tiny stellar cores spinning faster than your kitchen blender. I will discuss Fermi's first decade; the observatory, its mission, and the many discoveries it's made along the way.

Biography: Dr Elizabeth C. Ferrara is the Deputy Lead Scientist for the Fermi Science Support Center. She has been an active part of the Fermi mission since 2005, serving as the Instrument Operations Lead for the spacecraft through the launch and activation phases. Dr. Ferrara joined the Fermi science team in 2009, working to ensure that scientists around the globe have the resources they need to include Fermi in their research. Dr. Ferrara received a PhD in Astronomy from Georgia State University in 2000. In her spare time she is a ballroom dancer, scuba diver, and an avid Dungeons and Dragons player.