Andy's Home Page

This is the homepage of Andrew Fruchter, an astronomer on the staff of the Space Telescope Science Institute. This page contains a few items relating to the science and Institute work that I do.

Gamma-Ray Bursts

The discovery of optical counterparts to gamma-ray bursts has opened a new chapter in this emerging field of astrophysics. Here you can look at an HST images of the optical counterparts of gamma-ray bursts and their host galaxies. Among these are images of GRB 990123, a burst which reached an apparent visual magnitude of V=9 (bright enough to be observed with a pair of binoculars), yet was at a distance of some 10 billion light years.

Radio Pulsars

You can examine a paper on PSR B1957+20 , the black widow pulsar, or look at a virtual poster paper on the the nebula about the nearest millisecond pulsar, PSR J0437-4715.

WFPC2 and Dithering Strategies

The pixels of the WFPC 2 undersample the point spread function (PSF) of the Hubble Space Telescope and WFPC2 optics. Therefore, substantial information on the fine scale structure of objects can be obtained by offsetting the pointing of the telescope between exposures and then combining these "dithered" exposures into a single image. An introduction to the processing dithered exposures, as well as links to other Web pages on dithering can be found on my dithering page.

A program called Drizzle that Richard Hook and I wrote for the linear reconstruction of an image from dithered data was used to produce the The Hubble Deep Field, the deepest optical image of the universe yet taken.

SM3A Early Release Observations

As part of my work in the Office of Public Outreach, I led the program to obtain and process Early Release Observations for the third servicing mission (SM3A) of the Hubble Space Telescope. We observed two spectacular astrophysical objects -- the planetary nebula, NGC 2392, also known as the "Eskimo" nebula, and the center of the rich Abell cluster 2218, which is known for the extraordinary arcs surrounding its center, produced by the gravitational focusing of light from background galaxies. Information on the processing of these observations is available here.

And now for something completely different: Tennis.

It is time to head back to Paris (though when is it NOT the time to head back to Paris?) for the French Open.

Andy's PGP public key

fruchter @