Astrophysics and the Olympics

It's not every day that we can mention "Chandra" and the "Olympics" in the same sentence, but today we can. That's because Stacie Powell, who will compete in the 10-meter platform diving competition for Great Britain at the London Olympics beginning today, is also working on her Ph.D. in astrophysics.

Olympic Rings in London, UK
London 2012, the Tower Bridge and the Olympic Rings. Source: C├ęsar via Wikimedia Commons

Stacie is currently a student at Cambridge University in the UK, but she did some of her research at the Chandra X-ray Center at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics found in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In fact, she was on the British diving team during the Beijing Olympics before she started her master's degree. For her master's project, she worked on a new method for measuring the masses of clusters of galaxies using Chandra X-ray data. Her results are described in a 2010 paper, "Model-independent X-ray Mass Determinations."

Galaxy Cluster A2029
Example galaxy cluster, Abell 2029

You can watch a profile of Stacie on the BBC website:

Stacie dives today and we wish her the very best of luck!

-Chandra EPO

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