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Seeing New Frontiers with NASA's James Webb Space Telescope

Live Chat December 9th, 2021

The James Webb Space Telescope is NASA's next major space observatory. With its 20 foot (6 meter) diameter mirror and its vantage point one million miles (1.5 million km) away from the Earth, it will study everything from the earliest stars in the history of the Universe, to planets orbiting other stars, to asteroids in our own solar system. To get a sense of how this telescope works and what will be some of the science it will do first, come hear our two guests who are involved in both building and using the telescope.

Biographies of Show Participants


A Los Angeles native, Phil is an alumnus of Yale University and The Groundlings Theater and perhaps is best known as one of the original cast members of MAD TV, as “Hermes” on FUTURAMA,  as "Marvin" in PULP FICTION, “Green Lantern” on JUSTICE LEAGUE and as the voice of SAMURAI JACK. For over 30 years Phil has thrilled audiences with his work on camera and behind the microphone on TV shows such as STATIC SHOCK, FAMILY GUY, STAR WARS: THE CLONE WARS, the CW’s THE FLASH & SUPERGIRL, GET SHORTY, LUCIFER and VEEP; feature films like MADAGASCAR 2, INCREDIBLES 2, and THE LION KING (2019) and video games including FORTNITE, SHADOW OF MORDOR, and the INJUSTICE, METAL GEAR SOLID, and the MORTAL KOMBAT series.


Dr. Christine Chen is an Associate Astronomer with Tenure at Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) and a Research Scientist at the Johns Hopkins University in the Physics and Astronomy Department. Dr. Chen joined the JWST project as a MIRI Instrument Scientist in 2008 and is currently the STScI JWST Science Policies Group Lead. Her scientific research focuses on understanding the formation and evolution of planetary systems using multi-wavelength observations of debris disks. She will use JWST during its first year of observations to study the structure of disks and the properties of their constituent dust and gas, such as the composition.

AMY LO (Astronomer)

Amy Lo is the Deputy Director for the Vehicle Engineering IPT of the James Webb Space Telescope.  Amy is responsible for execution in support of the Space Vehicle Director for cost, schedule, and management of all Space Vehicle elements, as well as ensuring technical execution and process compliance for all Vehicle Engineering disciplines supporting the JWST program.  Prior to this role, Amy served as the Alignments Thread Lead for the James Webb Space Telescope, responsible for all aspects of mechanical alignments for the Observatory.