Emeriti Faculty

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Imke de Pater

Professor of Astronomy, Earth and Planetary Science

605A Campbell Hall


Website: http://astro.berkeley.edu/~imke/

Specialty areas

Adaptive optics and Radio Observations of the giant planets,Astronomy,Planetary Science,Their rings and satellites..

Research Interests

Professor de Pater’s research interests include: infrared observations using adaptive optics on the Keck, Gemini and VLT telescopes of e.g., the giant planets, their ring systems, and the satellites Titan and Io. She also continues to observe the giant planets at radio wavelengths using the (recently upgraded) Very Large Array, ALMA, and LOFAR.

Many exciting discoveries, including e.g., impacts on Jupiter, volcanism on Io, clouds on Titan and Uranus, and planetary rings are described on her webpages.



Imke de Pater is a Professor at the University of California in Berkeley. She is well known for her work on Jupiter’s synchrotron radiation, for which she received the URSI John Howard Dellinger Gold Medal in Aug. 1984. She led a worldwide campaign observing Jupiter’s radio emissions during the impact of comet D/Shoemaker-Levy 9 with Jupiter in 1994. This work has lead to a detailed investigation of the effects of impacts on the magnetospheric environment of the planet.

Her book “Planetary Sciences” was awarded the 2007 Chambliss Award for Writing from the American Astronomical Society.




Lead:Michael H. Wong

OPAL is the Outer Planet Atmospheres Legacy program. For the remainer of Hubble's lifetime, OPAL will continue mapping Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune every year to study their dynamics, weather, and climate.


Breakthrough Listen Initiative

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Lead:Andrew Siemion

The Breakthrough Listen Initiative, sponsored by the Breakthrough Prize Foundation, is the most powerful, comprehensive and intensive scientific search ever undertaken for signs of intelligent life beyond Earth. The project is using the Green Bank radio telescope in West Virginia,  the Parkes Telescope in Australia and the MeerKat Array in South Africa to search for radio transmissions from advanced civilizations.  In addition, the Automated Planet Finder at Lick Observatory is being used to search for optical laser transmissions from other technological civilizations.  Additional partnerships with other international facilities, including FAST (China) and the Jodrell Bank Observatory (UK), extend the program’s observational reach.



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