This talk describes an effort to detect life, and even conduct a planetary census, in our cosmic neighborhood. I’ll describe some results from the Colossus group, an interdisciplinary science and engineering team, working to show how telescopes much larger than the TMT or EELT could be built today by relaxing some of the astronomical requirements of current “world’s largest telescope” projects.
Dr. Jeff Kuhn
Dr. Kuhn is a physicist and astronomer, having received his physics PhD from Princeton in 1981. He helped found the Advanced Technology Research Center of the Institute for Astronomy University of Hawaii on Maui in 2003 and was its director until 2012. As a researcher, he’s generated about $14M of federal research grants over the last decade and published more than 200 papers. His innovative optical research has contributed to telescopes now under construction, like the Giant Magellan Telescope and the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (for which he is a principal co-investigator). His scientific work has been recognized with an International Senior Humboldt Prize (from Germany) and international research fellowships from Japan, Switzerland, Germany, and France. He serves as an advisor for diverse organizations ranging from the BreakThrough Starshot and Watch committees to advisory Boards for NASA and university programs. He leads the PLANETS consortium.