I've spent the last four days at the 230th American Astronomical Society summer meeting in Austin, Texas. AAS meetings are accessible to amateur astronomers via special low cost day passes and as volunteers. The plenary talks showcased some of the amazing talent in the field. They were interesting and easy to follow for non-specialists. Talks spanned the range from dark energy to the atmospheres of newly discovered exoplanets.
This is truly a golden age of astronomical discovery. The power of the scientific method combined with amazing modern instruments on earth and in space is revealing wonders from the origin of the universe to details from the thousands exoplanets that have been discovered.
It was exciting to see how young and diverse researchers in the exoplanet community are. Their most productive years are ahead of them and I look forward to more amazing discoveries.
AAS meets twice yearly. It's time well worth it for anyone with an interest in the big picture.
Content created: 2017-06-08
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