September 26, 2022

NASA engineer Michael Davis will deliver The James Webb Space Telescope: It Works; Perfectly! at this year’s Claritas Distinguished Lecture at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 10, in Susquehanna University’s Degenstein Center Theater.

The lecture is free and open to the public.

Davis will present an overview of the JWST Project as well as some of the latest images and scientific data from this revolutionary telescope that is already rewriting physics and astronomy textbooks.

The December 2021 launch of the James Webb Space Telescope culminated a 25-year effort to design, construct, test and launch a space telescope to conduct infrared astronomy. Also called the “First Light Machine,” JWST is designed to look across the far reaches of the universe to observe the first stars and galaxies that resulted from the Big Bang. As the largest optical telescope in space, JWST can view objects too early, distant or faint for the 30-year-old Hubble Space Telescope.

Davis is the deputy mission systems engineer for NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope Project. He received a bachelor’s degree in astronomy from Villanova University in 1982 and has worked on JWST for the past 19 years. His responsibilities included formulation and management, system design and integration, and the verification and validation of the 30,000 JWST requirements.

The Distinguished Visitor Program at Susquehanna University was endowed by George E. ’64 and Margaret Lauver ’66 Harris to support lectures, seminars or residencies by nationally recognized leaders in business, government or education on topics in the public interest. This series brings an accomplished scholar in the sciences to Susquehanna’s campus annually for a public address.