Andrea Banzatti discusses James Webb Space Telescope with Big Ideas TXST

Inside TXST

Jayme Blaschke | March 10, 2022

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Andrea Banzatti, an assistant professor in the Department of Physics at Texas State University, joins the Big Ideas TXST podcast for March's episode, discussing the observatory time he has been awarded on NASA's recently-launched James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).

JWST is NASA's flagship infrared telescope designed to study exoplanets and distant galaxies. The telescope was successfully launched Dec. 25, 2021, and is now at its permanent home at the L2 Lagrangian point, where it will observe the deepest reaches of the cosmos. Banzatti will use 19 hours of observation time during the telescope's first cycle of observations in the summer of 2022 for the research program, "The infrared water spectrum as a tracer of pebble delivery to rocky planets."

Banzatti earned his Ph.D. at ETH Zurich, Switzerland in 2013, after earning both his master's and bachelor's degrees in physics from the University of Milan, Italy. Banzatti's research interests include the observations of protoplanetary disks and exoplanet formation across the wavelength spectrum (ultra-violet, optical, near- and mid-infrared, and radio), and across disk evolutionary stages (primordial, transition and debris disks). Much of his research focuses on monitoring biologically-relevant gas chemistry, such as water and organic molecules, in planet-forming regions.

 Big Ideas TXST is a monthly podcast from Texas State‚Äôs Division of University Advancement that goes inside the fascinating minds forging innovation, research and creativity at the university. Hosted by Daniel Seed, a lecturer in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, each episode features thoughtful interviews and discussion with the thought leaders developing innovative ideas to make the world a better place.

Big Ideas TXST can be found at news.txstate.edu/inside-txst/big-ideas-podcast. The podcast may also be listened to or subscribed to at:

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For more information, contact University Communications:

Jayme Blaschke, 512-245-2555

Sandy Pantlik, 512-245-2922