Institute of Astronomy

Cosmos and Canvas: Using Data Visualization to Explore and Communicate Your Science

SpeakerTalk DateTalk Series
Jayanne English31 May 2023Institute of Astronomy Seminars


Data visualizations that resonate with human perception strongly enhance discovery-based science. Examples include perception-based colour mappings through to bold colour images from telescopes that act as extraordinary ambassadors for astronomers. But are these astronomy images snapshots documenting physical reality or are they artistically digitized space-scapes? To answer this, the lecture illustrates how original black and white astronomy data are converted into the colour images gracing magazines and websites. It also describes how any scientist who visualizes observations, simulations and models can harness colour and composition to explore data and communicate results with greater clarity to both their colleagues and the non-expert public. This talk presents the perspective of a research astronomer who has created numerous images for NASA and also trained as a visual artist.


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