Snap Talk by Katelyn Allers
Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy
"Using BIG Lasers to Study the Tiniest Stars"
Abstract: Brown dwarfs are the bantamweights of the stellar family. Lacking sufficient mass to fuse hydrogen, they bridge an important gap between planets and stars. Using a high-powered laser to reduce the effects of turbulence in the earth's atmosphere we have produced images sharper than seen with the Hubble Space Telescope and have discovered systems of brown dwarf "twins". Such twins provide critical tests of current models for both brown dwarfs and extrasolar planets.