Emily Levesque

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Emily Levesque is an Icons-flag-us.png American astronomer and Assistant Professor in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Washington.[1] She is renowned for her work on massive stars and using these stars to investigate galaxy formation. In 2014, she received the Annie Jump Cannon award for her innovative work on gamma ray bursts.[2] and the Sloan Fellowship in 2017[3] In 2015, Levesque, Rachel Bezanson, and Grant R. Tremblay published an influential[4] paper,[5] which critiqued the use of the Physics GRE as an admissions cutoff criterion for astronomy postgraduate programs by showing there was no statistical correlation between applicant's score and later success in their academic careers. Subsequently, the American Astronomical Society adopted the stance that the Physics GRE should not be mandatory for graduate school applications,[6][7] and many graduate astronomy programs have since removed the Physics GRE as a required part of their graduate school applications.[4][7]

Early life and education[edit]

Levesque grew up in Taunton, Massachusetts.[8] She received her undergraduate degree in physics at MIT in 2008, followed by a PhD in astronomy at the University of Hawaii in 2010.[9]

Academic career[edit]

From 2010-2015, Levesque was a Post Doc at University of Colorado as an Einstein Fellowship from 2010-2013, and then followed by a Hubble Fellowship from 2013-2015 .[10][11] She has been an Assistant Professor in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Washington since 2015[1].

Research[edit]

Size comparison of red supergiant stars according to Emily Levesque's publication https://doi.org/10.1086%2F430901

Levesque uses both observations and modeling in her work. In the ultraviolet portion of the spectrum, she uses the Hubble Space Telescope to obtain spectra of star-forming galaxies.[12] In the optical, she uses the Gemini and Keck observatories on Mauna Kea and the Las Campanas Observatories in Chile to study red supergiants in the Milky Way and in the Magellanic Clouds. She has discovered many new red supergiants, as well as the first candidate of a Thorne-Zytkow object.[13] Levesque and Jamie Lomax also sparked a jumping spider Twitter arachnoastronomy phenomenon with the help of Nathan Morehouse who studies spider eyesight at the University of Cincinnati.[14][15]

References[edit]

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  12. Zetterlund, Erika; Levesque, Emily M.; Leitherer, Claus; Danforth, Charles W. (2015-01-01). "Ultraviolet ISM Diagnostics for Star-forming Galaxies. I. Tracers of Metallicity and Extinction" (in en). The Astrophysical Journal 805 (2): 151. arXiv:1504.00011. Bibcode 2015ApJ...805..151Z. doi:10.1088/0004-637X/805/2/151. ISSN 0004-637X. http://stacks.iop.org/0004-637X/805/i=2/a=151.
  13. Levesque, Emily M.; Massey, Philip; Żytkow, Anna N.; Morrell, Nidia (2014-09-01). "Discovery of a Thorne–Żytkow object candidate in the Small Magellanic Cloud" (in en). Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters 443 (1): L94–L98. arXiv:1406.0001. Bibcode 2014MNRAS.443L..94L. doi:10.1093/mnrasl/slu080. ISSN 1745-3925. http://mnrasl.oxfordjournals.org/content/443/1/L94.
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