Faces of UVic Research: Sara Ellison

Uploaded by UVic on 24.04.2012

My name is Sara Ellison and I'm an astronomer at the University of Victoria.
Astronomy is one of the most fundamental sciences that we as the human race
can study. It deals with the smallest of scales and it deals with the largest of scales,
everything from the physics of atoms to the physics of stars.
My research deals with the way that the massive galaxies that we see all around us today,
galaxies like our own milky way, galaxies like our near neighbours, the andromeda spiral and other
small galaxies and large elliptical galaxies, how all of these came into being. So
I try to figure out
how you get from the raw ingredients that came out of the big bang, just individual
atoms of hydrogen and helium,
how those form the stars, and then eventually these massive entities
that we live in today.
Astronomy is one of those very exciting sciences that appeals to
many people because beyond the physics of what we can do, at the
telescopes and on the computer,
it really allows us to understand the important questions of who we are where
we came from and where the universe is ultimately going, and I think those kinds
of questions are very exciting to us as humans. In the same way that we have the intellectual
capacity to think about art and music, I think astronomy has that same impact on us as individuals.