Michelle Thaller, PhD in Astrophysics working at Nasa’s Goddard Space Flight Center describes her passion, the universe itself, in an informative and moving TED presentation. She emphasizes the drama and unimaginable magnitudes involved in the formation and structure of the galaxies and other aspects of the cosmos we find ourselves in. She talks poetically of the fact that we are all stardust. The elements that constitute the atoms in our bodies were forged in supernovae, billions of stars which exploded over the billions of years of time in the early universe which coalesced to form all material objects, and eventually living things like us.
From The Secret Life of Sciences we learn that Dr.Thaller is also a Renaissance dancer and her fav science quote is from Einstein:
“The universe is stranger than we can imagine.”
It surely is.
Check out her profile in the “Secret Life” link above, it is full of interesting sidelights, and other talents of this engaging astrophysicist.
Dr. Thaller is another example of women scientists, who are coming to the forefront and educating the public in addition to pursuing their research. We are fortunate to have a whole spate of men and women scientists and science educators who spread the real deal on what we know about our existence and the universe in which we reside.
Like Lawrence Krauss and Neil De Grasse Tyson, Michelle Thaller explains the workings of the cosmos with a passion all her own. Instead of the hopelessly ignorant and just plain wrong, primitive explanations of the heavens that we have inherited from the worlds religions, we get the fascinating and incomparable scope of the true reality of the celestial realm. We are stardust, the children of dead stars.
This is what we can accomplish, understand and learn to appreciate when we are not doing religion.