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Open House Night in Astronomy

Notre Dame professor and Penn State Behrend alumnus to discuss M-dwarf stars
Are there planets out there similar to Earth? Justin Crepp thinks so.

Crepp, assistant professor of physics at the University of Notre Dame, will discuss the possibility for life around the universe’s smallest stars in “The M-dwarf Opportunity: Looking for Life around the Smallest Stars,” the next Open House Night in Astronomy lecture at Penn State Erie, The Behrend College.

Crepp’s presentation will begin at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 10, in room 180 of the college’s Jack Burke Research and Economic Development Center, 5101 Jordan Road. It is free and open to the public. Astronomical observing from the college’s Mehalso Observatory will follow, weather permitting.

M-dwarfs, which are the universe’s smallest stars, have a propensity to form planets similar in size to the Earth, according to Crepp, a Penn State Behrend alumnus.

“M-dwarfs provide a unique opportunity for detecting terrestrial planets located in the habitable zone, and forth-coming astronomical telescopes and instruments allow us to study nearby worlds similar to our own in unprecedented detail,” says Crepp.

Open House Nights in Astronomy are an outreach program of the School of Science at Penn State Behrend. These nontechnical presentations are intended for ages 8 and up; for additional information, contact the school at 814-898-6105.

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