Spaceport America Podcast, Episode 2 “Why Pluto is a planet in New Mexico”
Guest: Dr. Chris Churchill
Dr. Churchill and his research group study galaxy evolution from the perspective of gas flows through galaxies. In particular, we use the spectra of quasars to studying how galaxies form stars and then lose their capability to continue to make stars and slowly die. Dr. Churchill and his collaborators make extensive use of the Keck Observatory’s 10-meter telescopes, the Apache Point 3.5-meter telescope, and the Hubble Space Telescope. To undertake his science, Dr. Churchill has become an expert in observational spectroscopic techniques and analysis and he is currently finalizing a graduate level textbook with Cambridge University Press. He has most recently begun research into artificial intelligence and machine learning, especially deep learning neural networks for extracting the galactic properties directly from the data with no human analysis required. Dr. Churchill teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in astronomy, among them are “Stellar Spectroscopy”, “Life in the Universe”, and “Into the Final Frontier”. He is passionate about all things “space”.