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MEDIA ADVISORY: Women’s Contributions to Astronomy to be Discussed at MU’s “Cosmic Conversations”

March 6th, 2013

Story Contact: Timothy Wall, 573-882-3346,

WHAT: Many comets, nebulae, stars, and galaxies were discovered by women, but those women’s contributions are often overlooked. For example, students learn about William Herschel, a composer and astronomer who discovered the planet Uranus, but don’t hear about his little sister, Caroline, who worked alongside him. Lanika Ruzhitskaya, a post-doctoral researcher in the department of physics and astronomy in the University of Missouri’s College of Arts and Science, will lead a discussion of discoveries and other contributions to astronomy made by women from the 18th century to the present.

The MU Department of Physics and Astronomy in the College of Arts and Science and the Central Missouri Astronomical Association host the monthly lecture series.

Lectures take place on the first Wednesday of each month. Laws Observatory, an observatory deck on the fifth floor of the physics building, will be open after each lecture to view the stars.

WHO: MU astronomers and the general public

WHERE: Laws Observatory, Physics Building

MU campus

WHEN: 7 p.m., Wednesday, March 6

NOTE: This event is free and open to the public. The observatory will be open if weather permits.