Active Research


The La Silla QUEST Kuiper belt Survey

Megan Schwamb

Megan Schwamb & David Rabinowitz used the La Silla QUEST Survey to search for Pluto-sized objects in the outer solar system. 

The La Silla QUEST Kuiper belt Survey is searching for the largest and brightest planetesimals in the outer solar system in the Southern Hemisphere.  Using the ESO 1.0-m Schmidt telescope, located at La Silla Observatory in Chile, equipped with Yale's 10 square degree QUEST camera, we have been searching for distant Pluto-sized bodies out to distances of ~150 AU in the Southern Skies down to a limiting magnitude of 21.5 in R band.  To date the survey has covered ~10,000 square degrees south of the ecliptic. Using the SMARTS 1.3-m telescope, we have been further studying orbits and optical colors of our new discoveries...





Image Credits: (header) Image of prominence, SOHO (ESA & NASA)


07.17.2014 Charting the heavens like never before, via Sloan Digital Sky Survey
Yale University scientists are involved all of the major aspects of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, an initiative that spans four continents and includes 200 astronomers at more than 40 institutions. They will chart thousands of nearby galaxies, probe the composition of stars throughout the Milky Way with novel clarity, and measure the expansion of the universe during a particularly murky period.
07.11.2014 Yale astronomers find seven galaxies using camera lenses
The astronomy project, using eight telephoto lenses lashed together, turned up seven new galaxies, but so far it’s unknown how far away they are. That’s why the scientists have rented time on the giant space-based Hubble telescope “to see if Hubble can find individual stars in the galaxies,” he said. That will tell them how far away the galaxies are. It’s a difficult task because the galaxies are all diffuse in nature.
05.20.2014 Liang Yu, '14 B.S. has been awarded the Beckwith Prize from the Astronomy Department.
The prize is awarded to the undergraduate most proficient in some branch of astronomy or mathematics. In addition to the Beckwith Prize, Liang also was awarded Exceptional Distinction in the Major. Congratulations Liang!

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© 2014 Yale University. All Rights Reserved.