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New Faculty at the Institute

Fabio Bresolin (left) consults with Rolf Kudritzki on a scientific project. Dr. Bresolin arrived in August 2001 to continue their joint studies of hot massive stars.

Several new faculty members have recently arrived at the IfA. Fabio Bresolin and Roberto Méndez have come from Munich to continue their work with IfA Director Rolf Kudritzki. Dr. Bresolin was born in Italy and received his Ph.D. from the University of Arizona. His research interests include hot massive stars.

 

Dr. Méndez studies bright clouds of glowing gas and dust surrounding highly evolved stars. These are called planetary nebulae because early observers thought they resembled planetary disks. Dr. Méndez was born in Buenos Aires and received his Ph.D. from the University of La Plata in Argentina. He arrived at the IfA at the beginning of this year.

 

Bo Reipurth was most recently a senior research associate at the Center for Astrophysics and Space Astronomy, University of Colorado. He arrived at the IfA in December 2001. Dr. Reipurth is the editor of "The Star Formation Newsletter," an electronic publication dedicated to early stellar evolution and molecular clouds, which he founded in 1992. While here on a two-year appointment, he has started the Center for Star and Planet Formation in Manoa and Hilo. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Copenhagen in 1981.

 

Born in Honolulu and of Hawaiian ancestry, Paul Coleman received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Pittsburgh in 1985. His research interests include the large-scale structure of the Universe, which he studies both theoretically and observationally. Now at IfA-Manoa, he will eventually move to IfA-Hilo. "When I started in physics, I expected to study relativity, and I never expected to come back to Hawaii. But I ended up doing astrophysics, and Hawaii is the best place to do that."

 

Christ Ftaclas comes to us from Michigan Technological University, but he has preexisting ties to Hawaii. He is the lead scientist for the Near Infrared Coronagraphic Imager being built by Mauna Kea Infrared on the Big Island. The purpose of this instrument, and the focus of much of Dr. Ftaclas's work, is to find faint objects that are close to bright ones, especially planets in extrasolar planetary systems. (The coronagraph was invented in the 1930s to study the Sun's corona by blocking out the solar disk, much as the Moon does during an eclipse.) Dr. Ftaclas arrived at the IfA in January 2002. He received his Ph.D. from the City University of New York.