One of my last posts was about my three weeks at the University of Chicago, and in that post I mentioned the project I did for the class. My project, in summation, consisted of making color images of galaxies and then using those images along with the spectra (plots of the amount of light a given object gives off as a function of wavelength of light) to discover what types of stars were in said galaxies. Most cosmic objects have spectra, and by measuring the wavelengths of light from an object astronomers can learn the composition of that object.
This project was a lot of fun and I learned a heck of a lot. When I presented my project, my professors were very impressed and two people who worked at the Yerkes Observatory (where we studied) even wanted to see my work! One lady from the observatory asked if she could use my presentation to teach middle schoolers how to make color images.
To make it easier to understand I've put my project's final presentation in video format, below. (Please note: the slides move somewhat quickly so be ready to hit pause if need be!)
I created every image in this presentation, and as I said before, it was a lot of fun! It was very rewarding to go from a black and white image to a beautiful color image of a galaxy. I think I’ll continue to make images, so be on the lookout for them!