Dr. Laura L. Watkins

ESA-AURA Astronomer

Space Telescope Science Institute

I am an ESA-AURA Astronomer at STScI. I am one of two Deputy Mission Heads in the Science Mission Office, I work on various Science Infrastructure and Hubble Science Policy activities. I am a member of the High-resolution Space Telescope PROper MOtion (HSTPROMO) research group. I am also part of the JWST Telescope Scientist Team Local Group Proper Motion Science project.

My primary research interests are the internal spatial and velocity distributions of small stellar systems, and what they can tell us about their formation, evolution, and present state. I also use these systems as tracers of their host galaxies. I study the kinematics using proper motions from Hubble and from Gaia, and use dynamical models to connect the observations to the underlying physics. I also work with simulated systems to test models and inform future observations. I am particularly interested in the globular clusters of the Milky Way, but have broader interests in nearby dwarf galaxies, and both the globular cluster and dwarf galaxy systems in the Local Group.

  • #Astrometry
  • #DarkMatter
  • #DwarfGalaxies
  • #DynamicalModelling
  • #Gaia
  • #GlobularClusters
  • #Hubble
  • #JWST
  • #LocalGroup
  • #MassProfiles
  • #MilkyWay
  • #ProperMotions
  • #ResolvedStellarPopulations
  • #StellarKinematics