Newswise — February 22, 2017 (Waterloo, Ontario, Canada) – Where did we come from? How did we get here? Are we alone in the universe? These are among the most profound questions in all of science. In 2018, NASA will launch the James Webb Space Telescope – the Hubble Space Telescope’s successor – with the hope that it will help answer these questions, as well as provide data to hundreds of scientific research projects around the globe.

In her March 1 public lecture at Perimeter Institute, NASA astrophysicist Amber Straughn will talk about the challenges of developing and constructing a telescope that is 100 times more powerful than Hubble, and will provide some insight into what we can expect from this powerful new tool.

The lecture, titled “A New Era in Astronomy: NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope,” is part of the Perimeter Institute Public Lecture Series, supported by Presenting Sponsor BMO Financial Group. The lecture will be webcast live on and via partner organizations on Wednesday March 1 at 7 PM ET.

An astrophysicist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Centre in Greenbelt, MD, Straughn is a member of the James Webb Space Telescope Project Science Team and serves as the Associate Director of the Astrophysics Science Division. Her research examines how galaxy interactions, supermassive black holes, stars, and gas inflows/outflows affect the growth and evolution of galaxies.

In addition to research, Straughn is actively involved in science communications activities, including speaking at schools, astronomy clubs, museums, and research societies. She has appeared on numerous TV programs on done numerous live television interviews and media features for NASA, and has appeared on The Discovery Channel, The Science Channel, PBS NOVA, NatGeo, BBC, the History Channel, Spike TV, and in the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon “Hubble Gotchu” segment.

Following her talk, Straughn will answer questions from the online and in-house audience – including questions submitted prior to and during the talk via Facebook and Twitter (using the hashtag #piLIVE). Questions are welcomed from everyone – aspiring scientific explorers, school classes, physics and chemistry buffs, and general science enthusiasts.

View past PI Public Lectures and events, and find further details about PI’s research, training, and outreach activities at

LIVE WEBCAST DETAILS- What: Amber Straughn, The New Era in Astronomy: NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope- When: Wednesday, March 1, 7 PM ET- Where: Live at Perimeter Institute, webcast online at - Pose questions for Straughn by tweeting @Perimeter using the hashtag #piLIVE- More info:

ABOUT PERIMETER INSTITUTEPerimeter Institute is the world’s largest research hub devoted to theoretical physics. The independent Institute was founded in 1999 to foster breakthroughs in the fundamental understanding of our universe, from the smallest particles to the entire cosmos. Research at Perimeter is motivated by the understanding that fundamental science advances human knowledge and catalyzes innovation, and that today’s theoretical physics is tomorrow’s technology. Located in the Region of Waterloo, the not-for-profit Institute is a unique public-private endeavour, including the Governments of Ontario and Canada, that enables cutting-edge research, trains the next generation of scientific pioneers, and shares the power of physics through award-winning educational outreach and public engagement.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CONTACT:Eamon O’FlynnManager, Media Relationseoflynn[at]perimeterinstitute[dot]ca(519) 569-7600 x5071@Perimeter