Imagine the Universe!

The Imagine Team

Who Writes this Stuff ??

The materials found in the Imagine the Universe! web site are written by a dedicated group of astronomers and programmers who work at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. Some members of this jolly group spend their days recovering data from old X-ray and gamma-ray satellites and making it available to the public for use again. Others spend their time helping various astronomers plan and interpret observations obtained with current satellite missions such as XMM, INTEGRAL, and the Rossi X-ray Timing Explorer (RXTE), and others plan for upcoming missions such as Swift, Astro-E2, and GLAST. All of these activities entail astronomers and programmers working together to develop sophisticated computer software and databases which are made accessible via the web. Since 1996 we have provided educational materials and resources to a broader community of students, teachers, and the general public who wish to know more about the wondrous Universe.

The OXPOG staff

[Left to Right: (First Row) J.D. Myers, Mike Arida, Jim Lochner;
(Second Row) Beth Jacob, Koji Mukai, Sara Mitchell, Meredith Bene, Gail Rohrbach, Karen Smale, Georgia de Nolfo; (Third Row) Barb Mattson, George Gliba, Kevin Boyce, Jay Cummings; (Fourth Row) Ryan Dorrill, Hans Krimm, Chris Wanjek]

Contributors (not all are pictured above):

Jim Lochner -- Imagine the Universe's numero uno. He keeps it running and keeps everyone happy. He studies X-ray binaries in his spare time (when not listening to "Car Talk". He's hoping for some new Car Talk t-shirts soon!).

Nick White -- Director of the Lab for High Energy Astrophysics, as well as Group Leader for the Office of Guest Investigator Programs (i.e., the HEASARC). He's in control, but not necessarily in charge.

Meredith Bene -- Our second (and fourth) web master extraordinaire. She's one of the happiest people we know, likely due to all that Joan Baez and Peter, Paul & Mary that she listens to. For a short time she wore 3-D glasses for Goddard's Visualization lab, but is back to cheer us up again.

Koji Mukai -- Responsible for running our "Ask an Astrophysicist" service. Also an expert in cataclysmic variables, ASCA, ASTRO-E2, bike trails in Maryland, and the Baltimore Orioles batting averages.

Karen Smale -- Web page designer and graphic artist, among other talents. She can draw you a map to anywhere and sing you a tune to send you on your way. (Since she's part of AstroCappella, it's likely to be a song about the Doppler shift.)

Gail "Qui-Gon Jinn" Rohrbach - Gail has been training HEASARC GOF knights for many years. She now sits on the RXTE Guest Observer council, and is also preparing knights for the Swift mission. She continues to provide valued input to our projects.

Mike Arida -- A technologist who helps the visiting scientists at the HEASARC analyze data from their favorite satellite. Mike is no longer looking for a ticket to Antarctica, but hopes his son can get a summer job at McDonalds there.

George Gliba -- Helps sort through all those Ask an Astrophysicist questions for the archive. As an avid amateur astronomer, he's the person we go to for observational astronomy questions (when he's not spending his nights observing meteor showers). He also sends out all those CDs, posters and booklets.

Beth Jacob -- Education lead for cosmic ray projects and moving force behind the Cosmic and Heliospheric Learning Center.

Sara Mitchell -- Our newest team member. She can present a workshop, film a commercial, fix a website, wire a house, and hunt down a bargain. She can even work a Macintosh.

Ryan Dorrill -- Our undergraduate intern during summer 2004. A physics student from UMBC, he wrote webpages for us, played frisbee, worked on short stories, and occasionally disappeared for a few days to hike up Old Rag Mountain.

J.D. Myers -- Concentrates his efforts on the upcoming gamma ray missions Swift and GLAST.

Christopher Wanjek -- Science writer and contributor to our news features and special exhibits.

Georgia de Nolfo -- Our second token cosmic ray astrophysicist. She works on ACE and TIGER/HNX and is very enthusiastic about education and public outreach.

Ilana Harrus -- Purveyor of all things French, Ilana is fit enough to ride her bicycle around a neutron star, although she would complain about all the uphills.

Eric Christian -- Our token cosmic ray astrophysicist, and in 2001 was our man in Antarctica! (Jim and Mike are so jealous!)

Padi Boyd -- Expert in chaos (no wise cracks !) in astronomy. Leader of well-known (at least in these parts) a cappella group and a driving force behind AstroCappella.

Pat Tyler -- A web geek if we ever saw one. Expert at digitizing images and making presentations look good. If it's out there, she knows how to get it.

Contributors to "Ask a High-Energy Astrophysicist"

Kevin Boyce -- Physicist, engineer, programmer, web author, and not afraid to let his geek flag fly. When not in Japan working on ASTRO-E2, he is usually listening to, writing or performing some sort of loud music.

Laura Brenneman -- Let's see ... active in basketball, soccer, softball, and astrophysics. We'll take her for our team!

Scott Owens -- Won a Master Class Costuming Award at a recent science fiction convention (thanks to Maggie's Jedi robe.) Also makes light sabers and bread in his spare time. What the heck does he do at work?

Hans Krimm -- Used to teach college physics and astronomy, now hunts gamma-ray bursts and launches balloons.

Barb Mattson -- Science writer for Swift, Constellation X, and oh yes, her own PhD thesis. An avid reader, player of darts and pool, and fan of Marvin (the Martian on Bugs Bunny). Quiet and unassuming (we think!).

Amy Fredericks -- Formerly with our Lab, but now a data analyst at MIT's Chandra X-ray Center. She is a master of popular music trivia, a devout fan of Tori Amos, and has a soft spot for Joe Perry of Aerosmith.

Others contributers include Stefan Immler, Mike Lowenstein, Veronica Ponce, Martin Still, Vigdor Teplitz, Dirk Petry, and Jay Cummings.

Some of our former team members:

Laura Whitlock -- Imagine the Universe's first numero uno. It was her idea. She initiated the Education program for the Swift satellite, and is now living the good life in Louisiana.

Jesse Allen - Our first web guru who got things up and running. He is now playing with pretty pictures at Goddard's Visualization lab.

Brian Hewitt -- A former web programmer for us. Once in the radio business (that's broadcast, not the astronomy), he designed our new look in the Spring of 2000.

Allie Hajian -- Our aspiring benevolent dictator, who once honed her craft with us by bringing the scientists and their science down to Earth. She's now honing her craft as a mother!

Amanda Cook -- Our energetic undergraduate intern during Summer 2003. We worked her to the bone - playing games and doing art projects!

Steve Fantasia -- Webmaster for the HEASARC. He keeps the webserver and other web-related software up-to-date. He is also known to plan many social events and has an "infamous" movie grading scale.

Maggie "Jedi knight" Masetti - Maggie was the creative force behind the RXTE and Astro-E Learning Centers, among other things. She has answers at hand for many an ask astro question, not to mention a Simpsons or Star Wars quote for every occasion. She now flies in helicopters for Earth Science public outreach.

Tom Bridgman -- formerly a OSSE Instrument Specialist for the CGRO Science Support Center. He likes to do research on compact objects, radiation transport, and accretion. He is now at Goddard's Scientific Visualization Studio doing work in the Earth Sciences.

John Cannizzo -- An expert in accretion disks and interacting binary stars. In his spare time, John is a tennis enthusiast.

Daryl Macomb -- Worked for the Compton Gamma-Ray Observatory Science Support Center, Daryl likes to think of himself as just a humble guy helping good folks use gamma-ray data.

Jeff Silvis -- A physicist turned UV astronomer turned gamma-ray astronomer, Jeff has an avid interest in philosophies and mythologies of many cultures. He'll cook you an Indian meal while relating a quote from Lao Tsu and telling tales of the Nordic gods.

Sandy Antunes -- X-ray satellite scheduler by day, game writer by night, Sandy is working to create time from nothing.

Imagine the Universe is a service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Nicholas White (Director), within the Exploration of the Universe Division (EUD) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

The Imagine Team
Project Leader: Dr. Jim Lochner
Curator:Meredith Bene
Responsible NASA Official:Phil Newman
All material on this site has been created and updated between 1997-2005.